Chris Basham suggests new substitution rule could cost Sheffield United in race for European place

One of Sheffield United’s stars has recently suggested that the new substitution rule in the Premier League may hinder the Blades in their hunt for European football.

Sheffield United’s sensational 2019/20

The surprise package of the 2019/20 Premier League campaign has most certainly been Sheffield United.

On paper, the Blades don’t really have any outstanding talents.

However, due to a combination of some creative tactics on the part of Chris Wilder and his coaching staff, and a superb work ethic throughout the club’s squad, Sheffield United have taken the Premier League by storm.

In fact, as we head towards the return of the English top-flight, the Yorkshire-based club sit 7th in the table, just two points adrift of 5th placed Manchester United, whom they will overtake should they win their game in hand on Wednesday.

SHEFFIELD, ENGLAND – SEPTEMBER 28: Chris Wilder the head coach / manager of Sheffield United during the Premier League match between Sheffield United and Liverpool FC at Bramall Lane on September 28, 2019 in Sheffield, United Kingdom. (Photo by Robbie Jay Barratt – AMA/Getty Images)

Basham fearful over new sub rule

A victory over Aston Villa would also put Sheffield United just two points off 4th spot, and with 5th potentially set to become a Champions League berth for next season due to Manchester City’s European ban, there is a good chance that Wilder’s men will be plying their trade in a European competition next term.

However, as mentioned above, Sheffield United’s Chris Basham is seemingly fearful that a new Premier League rule may affect his side’s chances of securing a European spot.

With no competitive fixtures played in England since March, the Premier League are doing their utmost to ensure that there is no spike in injuries when play eventually resumes.

One way in which they are aiming to help players and coaches out is by increasing the number of substitutions permitted in a game from three to five for the rest of the season:

However, it is this rule which Chris Basham feels will put Sheffield United at a disadvantage heading into the business end of the season, as, in his words, the Blades ‘are not going to be as strong as the top six sides’:

“I think the substitutes thing that has come in will affect us a little bit because we are not going to be as strong as the top six sides.

“But we we are going to give it a good go and the manager would not let us do anything other than that.

“The manager said we can go from just being in the Premier League, staying up, or we can go and do something we’ve never done before and that is getting into Europe and getting into the Champions League.”

Quotes via the Mirror.

See also: Barcelona vs Leganés preview: How to watch La Liga online, betting tips, prediction and odds

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This article was edited by Conor Laird.

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