David Weir took over the reigns today at Bramall Lane and vowed that his aim was promotion back into The Championship, writes Graham Walker.
The 43-year-old former Rangers and Everton defender, who had been a coach at Goodison Park after retiring from playing only last year, started a three-year term with the Blades, his first job as a manager.
The Scotsman was paraded before the press and TV cameras this afternoon.
VIDEO: Press the play button to watch David Weir’s full chat with The Star’s digital editor Graham Walker.
SEE THE STAR TOMORROW FOR JAMES SHIELD’S IN DEPTH REPORT AND INTERVIEW WITH DAVID WEIR.
Asked if he could promise fans promotion next year, back into the Championship, he told The Star: “That’s got to be my aim. Football is about winning football games. I’ve no illusion about that. But what I will promise them is I will work hard, do the job, try to play attractive football and we’ll do our best to do that. That is ultimately the aim.
“I don’t want to go all guns blazing t6o get some results, get us up and then fall back again next year. That’s not what I’m about.”
He added: “We want to be playing at the top level. But, within that, we’ve got to be realistic. We’re got to create something that’s sustainable. Something that’s not two steps forward and three steps back.
“We’ve got to have the foundations in place to keep us there.
“We’ve got to understand where we are just now and the problems we’re facing, the budget restraints and the criteria we’re working under. But within that, we’ve got to try to get to where we want to be. There’s a plan to do that.
“With the help of the fans and everyone involved in the club, that’s my dream to take us back .
“You’ve got to shoot for the stars. But you’ve got to be realistic. We’ve got to see where we are and have a longer term plan.
“That’s got to be the goal. To look from this point to a point in the future. The biggest thing for me is to be sustainable. It’s not something that we want to get there as quickly as we can.
He added: “Within football you’ve always got to be under pressure to get success. But any pressure I’m under will be from myself. I’ve had a degree of success within my career and nobody wants it more than me. I don’t need pressure from anyone else in order to do that. That’s my nature, my motivation for myself.”
About geting the job and leaving Everton he said: “First and foremost I’m excited. Sheffield United as a football club has great history and tradition - a club with my ambitions, can hopefully go quite far. So I’m very excited.
“I didn’t stay at Everton because the project here was so exciting. For four or five years now my plans have been to be a manager and I’ve been looking for the right opportunity. I’ve tried to learn and develop.
“It’s nice to get in the position where this day will come and I could be the manager of a big football club and take it forward. That’s where I feel I am now. I’m prepared and I’ve been ready for a little while. This is the right opportunity.”
Lane fans will hope he brings stability at a club that has seen eight managers since 2007.
He succeeds Danny Wilson, who was sacked back in April, to be replaced in the short term by Chris Morgan.
A 69-cap Scotland international, Falkirk-born Weir’s most recent position was U21 coach at Everton.
He was interviewed for the Goodison Park job after David Moyes joined Manchester United.
Morgan, who oversaw United’s doomed Play-Off campaign, will revert back to his role as first-team coach.