Dave Bassett crowned greatest Sheffield United manager of all time

Dave Bassett has been crowned the greatest Sheffield United manager of all time by fans in an online poll.

Monday, 20th February 2017, 10:15 am
Updated Tuesday, 28th February 2017, 11:31 am
Dave Bassett

Bassett clocked up 40% of the vote in a final run off with Neil Warnock and John Harris after we asked you to select your greatest Blades bosses from down the decades.

He topped the poll ahead of Warnock (34%) and Harris (26%) who were voted the best Bramall Lane managers of the 2000s and from the club's birth in 1889 to the 1970s respectively.

Bassett had previously easily scooped victory in a poll to find the number one United manager of the 80s and 90s.

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"Harry," who also took charge at Wimbledon, Watford, Crystal Palace, Nottingham Forest, Barnsley, Leicester City, Southampton in his career, first arrived in Sheffield at the tail end of the 80s.

In 1987–88, Bassett became one of the few managers to have the dubious honour of being involved with two relegated clubs in the same season.

On 21 January 1988, just days after leaving Watford, he took over at Sheffield United. Despite bringing many new players, he was unable to prevent a weak team from sliding into the Third Division after losing the double-legged play-off with Bristol City 2–1.

However, with the Bassett bringing his own backroom staff during the close season and more new players brought in, he took them back up at the first attempt in 1988–89.

A second successive promotion following in 1989–90, and First Division football returned to Bramall Lane in the 1990–91 season for the first time since the 1970s.

Sheffield United failed to win any of their first 16 league games in 1990–91, breaking a First Division record in the process and went into the new year at the bottom of the First Division.

But a rousing resurgence in the second half of the season saw the Blades climb up to a secure 13th place in the final table.

They did even better in 1991–92, finishing ninth in the First Division and securing a place in the new Premier League.

Sheffield United's Premier League debut was reasonable.

They finished 14th in the final table, reached the semi finals of the FA Cup, and condemned Nottingham Forest to relegation by winning the penultimate game of the season.

Bassett's luck finally ran out on the last day of the 1993–94 season.

Needing a single point to avoid relegation, they lost 3–2 at Chelsea, having led 2–1 with 5 minutes remaining.

An eighth-place finish in the 1994–95 Division One campaign was not enough for a play-off place, and Bassett resigned the following December with relegation looking more likely than promotion and protests against the board mounting.