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02/03: Preview: Sheffield United
Opposition opinion
by United fan Mick Nicholson

What was last season like?
If it doesn't go down as a complete waste of everyone's time, money and emotions then I don't know what does. Top half of the table was achieved for a grand total of 24 hours after the manager spent the entire pre-season talking up our chances and the entire season talking them back down again. Any side who, s pre-season preparation is a jaunt round some of Cornwall's more rustic venues (would any of you care to guess which part of the country Colin has stated he's retiring to eventually?) shouldn't be surprised with a start of 5pts from 18, a start from which we never truthfully recovered. Home form completely collapsed from the norm and the several hundred draws-all of which the manager was flabbergasted at-effectively meant we never got off square 1.

What's next season gonna be like?
I write this the night after we signed someone from Tranmere,and the night we signed a 38 year old. We only have two recognised forwards, one not available until October due to injury and the other hasn't scored since Boxing Day. We are off to Cornwall again. Our board refuse to invest in the squad, despite shedding 10 players since last season, preferring to argue amongst themselves about borrowing 4m to build an academy. They are however prepared to spend 250k on greenery and paint to smarten the place up. Nero,Fiddles and Rome. Despite this, we do actually have some quality players who could, if they ignore all the morons round them, make a decent challenge for the upper reaches of the table. If they dont,the thieves, liars and posturing clowns in charge will sell them with indecent haste. If they do, they'll sell 'em anyway

Can you recommend a pub for away fans?
Bit off the beaten track but the Matilda on (funnily enough) Matilda St. is everything your average stereotyped northern boozer should be. Full of middle aged northerners drinking bitter and eating huge chip butties.

What's the nearest railway station?
Trying to think of an easier ground to get to from mainline station and struggling. Come out of station, take second road on your left and follow your nose-pausing to sample the Matilda en route.

Can you suggest somewhere to park?
No. Well yes but I don't want anyone nicking it.

Soundbites (from assorted Census correspondents)
"Robert Page is quality. Thank you very much."

"Hard to pick midfielders for the worst 11, we never had many! Usually played above their heads...something Watford can relate to!"

"There is something special about club and ground. It seems everyone falls in love with the team after one visit!"

"cheers for robert page"