Chris Wilder reveals how Sheffield United will approach the rest of the season as they look to upset the odds

Chris Wilder will urge his Sheffield United players to throw off the shackles and play with freedom as they look to defy the odds and retain their Premier League status this season.

Thursday, 4th February 2021, 6:00 am

Wilder's men gave their bid for survival a big boost on Tuesday evening, when they came from behind to beat second-bottom West Brom and move to within a point of their nearest relegation rivals.

With third-bottom Fulham also to play in the coming weeks, there is a renewed sense of belief around Bramall Lane after a run of five wins in their last seven games in all competitions.

Their two defeats in that mini-run came against Tottenham Hotspur and Manchester City, two teams who have much loftier ambitions at the other end of the Premier League table.

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And, speaking ahead of this weekend's clash with Chelsea at Bramall Lane, Wilder revealed: "We were brave in attitude and commitment but also in our thought process.

"I said to the players: 'Be yourself'. I asked them: 'What's the worst that can happen?'

"To get the results we have done recently has given us a bit of belief and it will grow from winning games of football.

"There's some ridiculous challenges ahead of us that we should enjoy. Let's be ourselves and let's go for it. That's what we did in the second half.

Chris Wilder manager of Sheffield United: Simon Bellis/Sportimage

"I've talked a lot about body language and identity; I've told the players to be the players we know they are. But you have to be brave on the ball as well.

"You can't just be a team that runs around and fights but then turns the ball over. We didn't do that at Old Trafford, our second goal there was a good goal and our goals [against West Brom] were good goals.

"We have to show bravery, not just in the physical and enthusiasm, but all the way right through the game."

Victory over Sam Allardyce's men also saw United, widely tipped at one point to go down in history as the worst top-flight side, reach 11 points, equalling Derby's record for the season when they were relegated with the lowest tally in Premier League history in 2007/08.