Sheffield United: 'Noise and nonsense' - Chris Wilder hits back at pundits' criticism of his methods after he told Manchester United loanee Dean Henderson to 'be better' after Liverpool blunder

Chris Wilder, the Sheffield United manager, has defended his style of man-management after his criticism of goalkeeper Dean Henderson made headlines following last weekend’s defeat to Liverpool.

Thursday, 3rd October 2019, 2:37 pm
Dean Henderson of Sheffield Utd reacts to the winning goal - Simon Bellis/Sportimage

After Henderson allowed Gini Wijnaldum’s shot to squirm through his legs to secure a 1-0 victory for the European champions at Bramall Lane, Wilder said the goalkeeper ‘has to be better’ and added: “I am not going to put my arms around him.”

That reaction created much debate, especially on Talksport where pundit Natalie Sawyer accused Wilder of ‘dinosaur management’.

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Asked at his press conference this morning whether his managerial record suggests his management style is actually working just fine, Wilder admitted: “I’d like to think so.

“Times at Oxford, and Northampton when we weren’t getting paid… the Premier League has a huge amount of coverage and creates debate and opinion. So I get that.

“I’m a football fan too so when I’m in the car, it’s not Smooth FM and when we’re at home, it’s not Peaky Blinders. It’s more often than not football.

“Because the Prem is such a big talking point there’s always going to be debate but sometimes, for me, it lacks depth and lacks thought. We have to get on with it, but some people say things to create debate and drag things out.

“Maybe it was a slow news week but I don’t think there was anything in it.

“Our players, including Dean, are mentally tough because of where they’ve come from and what they’ve achieved, and there is a tough mentality in the group.

“I’m the biggest supporter of these players by a million miles; the staff and I know what they’re about and Dean knows that from an individual point of view.

“There’s no hiding place and he’ll move on to the next game, as we all will. Some pieces I pick up and agree with; some I disagree with. And some are total noise and nonsense.”