Nigel Clough on why Preston North End tie is tougher than Tottenham Hotspur clash

Nigel Clough

Sheffield United will be looking to bounce back from the defeat to Tottenham Hotspur with victory over Preston North End today.

Sheffield United manager Nigel Clough has explained to The Sun why today’s clash against Preston North End could be tougher than the one against Tottenham Hotspur.

The Blades will take on fellow League One outfit Preston in the fourth round of the FA Cup at Deepdale.

United will head into the tie on the back of a narrow 1-0 defeat to Tottenham Hotspur at White Hart Lane in the League Cup semi-final first leg.

The Sheffield-based outfit were underdogs for Wednesday’s match but will be favourites to win today, and this is why Clough believes that the tie against Preston could be more difficult.

“A trip to Deepdale may not carry the glamour of taking on Tottenham but, in some ways, could be our toughest tie of the week,” the 48-year-old is as saying in The Sun's tablet edition.

“For a start, the pressure will be on us against Preston. Against Spurs, we were expected to lose. So that made it easier because we could just go out there, relax a bit and play our football.

“But because we are in the same division as Preston, much more is expected of us because of what we have achieved in cups over the past season-and-a-half.”

United will indeed be under more pressure to win today, but that does not mean that they will crumble at Preston.

Clough has a very good team who are genuine candidates for promotion to the Championship, and given how seriously the Englishman takes cup competitions, the Blades should be confident of going through to the fifth round of the FA Cup.

Preston, too, will have FA Cup ambitions of their own. Simon Grayson’s side are currently fourth in the League One table and are in contention of a top-two finish in the standings.

Playing at home will give Preston an edge, but United’s chances cannot be written off.

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