Here is how we rated the Blades' individual performances at Villa Park.
Did well to beat away a curling Hourihane effort as it came through a crowd of bodies but in, real-time, looked culpable for Villa's first and second goals
A lovely jinking run saw him beat two men and then draw a foul from Jedinak. Unfortunate to pick up a booking when he lost his footing just before bringing down McGinn
Dealt well with the lively Abraham until United's ten minutes or so of madness. Picked up a booking for wiping out the England international
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A class act all evening until the defining moment of the game, when he failed to clear a high ball and gave McGinn the chance to cross for Green to break Blades hearts
Heavily involved early on, testing Kalinic with one shot and teasing him with another deflected cross. Powerless to stop Green heading home Villa's equaliser after the Villa sub had the run on him
Pinged the ball around with his usual class in midfield and helped United keep up their good early tempo, strangling Villa into submission. Gave Jedinak the runaround before he was substituted
Looked back to the Fleck of old in spells as he drove forward with the ball and looked to get going United. Put his foot in when needed, too, and some real touches of class at the end as United tried, but ultimately failed, to hang onto their lead
Given a tough time early on by the lively Kodjia - who was eventually substituted after getting no joy - but had the freedom of Birmingham for much of the first half to get forward at will. Linked up well with Fleck and O'Connell
His best showing so far in a Blades shirt, carrying the ball intelligently and showing his class with little body feints to dummy his marker. Heavily involved in United's second and third goals and replaced by Cranie
Where to start? A hat-trick of poacher's efforts, all from within the six yard box where he is such a deadly operator. The only shame of the night, from his point of view, is that his treble wasn't enough to see United on the winning side
Showed some deft touches and strength to hold off the attention of Mings and could have scored when he got a touch to Baldock's cross. Gives United a different option when they need an 'out ball'
Brought on for Dowell in an attempt to shore things up for United but couldn't help them see out a three-goal lead
Some clever touches and one shot that was held comfortably by Kalinic