Sheffield United announced earlier this week that Serbian manager Slavisa Jokanovic would take charge at Bramall Lane this summer, taking over from caretaker manager Paul Heckingbottom.
The Blades revealed on Thursday that the experienced manager, who has previously spent time with Watford and Fulham, had signed a three-year deal with the club.
Jokanovic will leave his role at Qatari side Al-Gharafa in order to return to England and will be tasked with challenging for promotion from the Championship next season following Sheffield United’s relegation from the top flight.
Taking into account potential new signings, injury boosts and Jokanovic’s preferred style of play, Football FanCast predicts how the Blades could potentially line up next season in the Championship…
After finishing the Premier League season in impressive form and earning a call-up to England’s provisional 33-man squad for Euro 2020, Sheffield United may find it hard to keep hold of Aaron Ramsdale this summer, but he is a guaranteed starter in goal should he stay with the Blades.
Although the Bramall Lane outfit enjoyed a lot of success in recent seasons with a five-at-the-back system with overlapping centre-backs, Jokanovic’s preferred formation is a 4-2-3-1 according to Transfermarkt, so perhaps we will see him switch to that setup.
That should see John Egan partner Jack O’Connell at centre-back, with the former Blackburn Rovers man hopefully fit to make his return next season after missing virtually all of the Premier League season through injury.
George Baldock and Enda Stevens were both instrumental in Sheffield United’s promotion campaign from the Championship in 2018/19, so they keep their places at full-back.
In midfield, Sander Berge’s injury concerns this season could see him remain at Bramall Lane amid some transfer interest, so he should start alongside Ollie Norwood in midfield, with John Fleck pushed into a more attacking role.
He is joined by a potential new signing in Tom Cairney, who has been recently linked with a move to the Blades having worked with Jokanovic closely during his time at Fulham, whilst David McGoldrick also features in an attacking midfield role.
Finally, Jonson Clarke-Harris is another name who has been linked with the Blades; and after his superb season with Peterborough United, he would surely start up front, with Rhian Brewster perhaps likely to stay on the bench until he can break his goalscoring duck since his £23.4m move from Liverpool almost eight months ago.