SHEFFIELD United boss Danny Wilson last night insisted he does not “Give a ****” what sort of reception he receives from Sheffield Wednesday supporters during Sunday’s Steel City derby at Bramall Lane.
Wilson, who became the first person to manage both clubs when he was appointed as Micky Adams’ successor in May, admitted he is “absolutely excited” about the prospect of locking horns with his former employers.
And he delivered the perfect riposte to those who claim his links with Hillsborough mean he will have divided loyalties when Gary Megson’s side arrive at Bramall Lane.
Asked whether he expected Wednesday’s following to acknowledge his presence, Wilson said: “I don’t give a ****. Why should I?
“I had a fantastic relationship with Wednesday fans. In my mind I still have but you’d have to ask them if that’s the case.
“But I’m completely committed to Sheffield United now. Fact.
“Over a long career I’ve been privileged to manage some really good clubs and I’ve been completely committed to all of them.
“There really isn’t an issue in my mind about this at all.
“I appreciate the fact I’ve been at Wednesday is a ‘line’ for the media before this game but as I’ve maintained all along, it’s of no consequence to me.
“I’ll be going into the heat of the battle firmly on United’s side.”
Wilson expressed “great pride” when informed of his place in South Yorkshire’s footballing history - “I didn’t know until I was told but it’s a milestone” - before acknowledging: “If we can match the passion of our fans then we’ll end up with a good result.
“It’s not about the fans geeing us up. It’s about us getting up to the same level as the fans.
“That’s what this is. A day for the fans.
“It’s the first fixture they’ll have looked for at the start of the season and you can bet your bottom dollar they’ll have been counting the days ever since.
“I don’t think the intensity of the game has been diminished by where we are in the footballing pyramid.
“In fact, I think it’s made the game even more intense and passionate if that’s possible.”
“We want to go out there and give our fans something to be proud of.
“If we do, it’s for them.”