Sheffield United: The key talking points from Prince Abdullah's first press conference as Blades sole owner, featuring Chris Wilder and Stephen Bettis
Prince Abdullah faced the media for the first time as Sheffield United’s sole owner this afternoon at Bramall Lane.
Here’s a summary of the key points to emerge, with Chris Wilder, chief executive Stephen Bettis and new chairman Prince Musa’ad also in attendance.
I’m happy to be here, it’s a huge responsibility at a club with huge tradition and a big fanbase. I want to assure everyone we’ll work hard to make the fans proud and make everything better.
Dialogue with Chris Wilder – About five minutes ago! I’m really happy with the way we’ve played this season and we’ve showed we can compete with anyone. We’ve been unlucky in a couple of games but I love the way we’ve played. The football we play is beautiful and that’s full credit to Chris.
Will Chris be allowed to continue as he is – I’d be crazy to say otherwise and the last time I checked, I wasn’t crazy. We’re blessed to have Chris and the way we play speaks for itself. Chris is the face of this great club and is one of us. I have good harmony with Chris and we’ll work together to make this team better.
Transfers – Actions speak louder than words and in the last transfer window we fought hard to raise the budget, and I put guarantees from my own money to sign Oli McBurnie. We’ll support Chris but also run the club responsibly. We’ve seen many examples of clubs overspending and then suffering.
I’m very positive about the future, the ideal scenario for any manager is to be allowed to get on with the job to the best of their ability. I’ve expressed a touch of frustration towards Prince Abdullah and Kevin before but for the majority of times they’ve allowed me to get on with my job.
Jan van Winckel – I’m a very hands-on manager and my style of management is one where I’ve got the big decisions to make, and I’m sure Prince Abdullah will allow me to get on with my job. But I’m open to anything that is done to improve the club. Jan’s expertise is there to be seen, he’s been involved with major footballing decisions as a board member and I’m not arrogant enough to think I know everything about this game.
My role will be to drive strategy forward and work with Chris and Stephen. We want to be a Premier League club and have a sustainable club, but it’s business as usual for us. Prince Abdullah has been an owner since 2013 and Chris and Stephen will both complement him. We’ll work together, stick together and lift each other and the club upwards.
Is there any relief? Sure, there’s been a lot of noise outside the club itself which will hopefully go away now so we can focus on our job. During the period both Prince Abdullah and Kevin were extremenly sensible so it didn’t get ugly and affect the day to day running of the club. It’s nice to have one owner, one decision, so we’re optimistic about the future.