Sheffield United: ‘Some of the richest clubs in the division are jealous of what we’ve got here’

Chris Wilder has reminded some of the Championship's biggest and richest clubs would swap positions with Sheffield United "in a heartbeat" as his team prepares to resume its challenge for the Premier League.

By James Shield
Tuesday, 16 April, 2019, 16:44
Sheffield United face Nottingham Forest this weekend: Anthony Devlin/PA Wire.

With only four matches of the season remaining, Wilder's squad enters Friday's game against Nottingham Forest battling for second place with arch-rivals Leeds who currently occupy the Championship's second automatic promotion spot.

Despite being held to a draw by Millwall last weekend, United are only three points behind their neighbours from Elland Road and boast a superior goal difference.

Sheffield United players in a team huddle: James Wilson/Sportimage

Although Wilder acknowledged pressure will be an issue during the closing stages of the campaign, he insisted his team's ability to out-perform the likes of West Bromwich Albion, Aston Villa and Stoke City should ensure the mood inside Bramall Lane remains upbeat.

All three are in receipt of a PL parachute payment, with the latter spending over £12m on centre-forward Benik Afobe last summer.

"A lot of teams, a lot of very big and powerful teams, would swap with us in a heartbeat," Wilder, the United manager, said. "They'd give everything to be where we are in the table, fighting for what we're fighting for, rather than being in the position they are in.

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"Yes, there's always going to be ups and downs. But for me, there's also got to be perspective."

Chris Wilder: Simon Bellis/Sportimage

Wilder, who last night discovered he will not be punished for criticising referee David Webb's decision-making during the meeting with Millwall, added: "These boys, given how far they've come and what they've put in, you just can't criticise them.

"We were sat in the changing room the other day and I was sat with our analysis guy, who has been here a long time, talking about how far we've come. Sometimes, you have to take a step back and look at how far you've come. Even recently. You can't beat yourself up if something disappointing happens.

"You go back out there, together, and look to put it right."

Gary Madine scored during the draw against Millwall: James Wilson/Sportimage