Chris Wilder reiterates desire to keep hold of Sheffield United's star men if Blades are relegated

Chris Wilder has reiterated his belief that Sheffield United will be able to hang onto their star players if they are relegated to the Championship this season.

Tuesday, 2nd March 2021, 10:16 am

The Blades go into tomorrow’s game against Aston Villa bottom of the Premier League table and time is rapidly running out if they are to defy all predictions and somehow survive in the top flight.

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Predictably, their situation has led to speculation about their star men, including the likes of Sander Berge, John Egan and Jack O’Connell, while goalkeeper Aaron Ramsdale was yesterday said to be of interest to Europe-chasing West Ham United.

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But Wilder, who admitted in his post-match press conference ahead of the Villa game that he isn’t sure if he will be United manager next season, revealed: “I know the group and the players better than anyone, they want to be here and owe it to the club to here too.

“We brought them in and gave the opportunity that they took. It’s been a disappointing season but as far as I’m concerned the character of the players was key when I brought them in.

“They understood they weren’t signing for a top four club or an established Premier League club, they knew they were signing up for a club that had a challenge on to stay in the division.

Sheffield United's manager Chris Wilder walks onto the pitch for the English Premier League soccer match between Sheffield United and Liverpool at Bramall Lane (Oli Scarff, Pool via AP)

“Unfortunately it looks like we won’t be, but we’ll still give it a go and see what happens, but they will. They’re contracted to the club as well so the club’s in a good position, with a lot of good young talented players that will be a strong group if the inevitable happens.”