Former Sheffield United star Kyle Walker has looked back at the Blades’ Championship play-off final loss to Burnley in 2009.
Walker, 32, is expected to play a key role for the Gareth Southgate’s backline at the Qatar World Cup as England kick off their tournament against Iran on Monday.
The Manchester City full-back joined the Sheffield United U-18’s in 2008 before establishing himself as a first-team regular following a successful loan spell at Northampton.
As part of an ‘If I could’ feature with England ahead of the World Cup opener, Walker was asked what event in his life he would want to revisit and relive.
The four-time Premier League winner remembered a narrow play-off final defeat his boyhood side suffered to Burnley at Wembley in 2009.
Walker said: “Throughout the season, we were the better team out of the two but it was a good Wade Elliott goal that nestled into the back of the net and we didn’t get promoted.
“So if I could play one game again, knowing what I know now, it would be Sheffield United vs Burnley.”
Since he joined forces with Pep Guardiola at the Etihad Stadium, Walker is widely regarded as one of the best full-backs England has ever produced.
The former Tottenham man retains fond memories of his time at Sheffield United, whom he scored against in Manchester City’s 1-0 Premier League win at Bramall Lane in 2020.
“I grew up in Sheffield, I played for Sheffield United since I was six until I I signed for Tottenham at the age of 19, so they have a special place in my heart like everyone knows,” Walker added.
“And if had to go back for one game to rewrite history, it would be that game (against Burnley in 2009).”
After struggling with injuries this season, Walker has recovered in time to be named in Southgate’s 26-man World Cup squad in the absence of Chelsea’s Reece James.