Sheffield United: Rob Kozluk interview

Rob Kozluk's second spell at Sheffield United is barely six months old yet the defender has played for more managers in that period than in three years at Barnsley.

Not that it's a problem, the 33-year-old at last getting first-team football under new boss Micky Adams who Kozluk feels can bring

the 'Neil Warnock days' back to Bramall Lane.

Kozluk knows all about those days having spent eight years with the Blades between 1999 and 2007 when the now QPR manager took United on a rollercoaster from the Championship to the Premier League and back again, not to mention to League and FA Cup semi-finals.

And they were certainly better days than at present, with United 21st and just one point off the Championship relegation zone heading into yesterday's tie at Coventry City.

Kozluk, though, is unnerved – insisting new boss Adams' no-nonsense approach already reminds him of Warnock and is backing the hugely experienced manager to soon turn matters around – with Kozluk desperately hoping he personally can continue to stay in the side.

Analysing events during a dramatic return to the Lane, Kozluk told Yorkshire Sport: "It's been a bit strange really as I signed under Blackwell and you see him leave, (Gary) Speed leave and then you go from John Carver to Micky Adams.

"It's hard to imagine it being any more eventful really but it needed a change and Micky Adams is the one we needed.

"He's done some good things and he reminds me a lot of the Warnock days.

"If he brings all that back and stamps his own authority on it that

will be great and he's already done quite well since he's joined.

"He tells you how it is and that's what you want.

"There's a right way and a wrong way to play football but as he says it doesn't matter how you get from A to B, whether we pass it or we just go.

"You just want to win games and that's what he's instilled – that it's all about winning games."

And a spate of wins would be just the tonic at present – United now recognised as being in a relegation battle and written off in most parts as play-off contenders.

Kozluk's former employers Barnsley are actually shorter in most bookmakers' lists to get promoted but the defender who has switched from Oakwell to the Lane insists it is May that matters most.

"We find ourselves below Barnsley but it's a marathon not a sprint," said Kozluk.

"You are not bothered as long as you are better off in the long run.

"I think you can never tell in this Championship because when you look

at it, everybody can beat anybody on the day.

"If you pull a few results together you're back in that hunt.

"It will be a massive January and February and then you see where you are."

Kozluk too knows not where he will be come the summer with the Mansfield-born ace having signed just a one-year-deal with the Blades having been released by Barnsley last year.

After three initial appearances back in August, Kozluk soon found

himself out of the team but has still enjoyed his second spell at United thus far – delighted to now be back in favour and also feeling instantly settled with the likes of former team-mate Chris Morgan still

on board.

The five-foot-eight ace only wishes his defensive colleague was not out for the season.

"It was great joining the lads and Morgs made us feel welcome and that," said Kozluk.

"But I found games few and far between and I wasn't having much of a kick of a ball so this new manager can only be good for me.

"I'm not one of those that's a ranter and a raver – the previous manager had his own ideas and I let him get on with them. I didn't take it too far.

"At the end of the day when I am needed I am there and I will give 100 per cent.

"Thankfully in my first game for the new manager I scored so it couldn't have gone any better."

On Morgan's absence he added: "He's always the first name on the teamsheet and you work around him.

"Not having him on that Sheffield United teamsheet, we are going to miss him and he's going to be a big loss."

United are certainly one major man down but in Kozluk they possess another defender ready and waiting for duty. Kozluk will turn 34 in August and admits he is no spring chicken but feels he has plenty left to offer at Bramall Lane.

Looking ahead to his future, Kozluk pondered: "The age does catch up on you but the fitness and everything is still there.

"From that point of view I will keep going as long as I can and you never know what is around the corner.

"I've just signed until the end of the season so I've got to get my head down and after that we'll see what happens."

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