Sheffield United: 'We've achieved nothing yet...absolutely nothing'
Sheffield United manager Chris Wilder has warned his squad still has plenty to prove in the Premier League, despite quickly adjusting to life back in the to-flight.
After taking five points from their opening four games, United are now being touted as the most likely of the newly promoted teams to survive despite being viewed as relegation favourites at the beginning of the campaign.
Although they finished the latest round of fixtures ranked 10th following a draw with Chelsea, Wilder refused to accept his club has already established a foothold in the division following 12 years away.
"I've always maintained the players are a really humble and honest group," he said. "Nothing changes. It's a good start and that's all it is.
"We're not a team that pats ourselves on the back. I repeat, it's a good start and that's all. Yes, that was important, but we've still got to keep driving it forward because this level is unrelenting. The minute you get comfortable, you get punished."
Securing a share of the spoils at Stamford Bridge - Frank Lampard's employers have been crowned champions of England on six occasions - represented United's most impressive result of the season so far. After drawing with AFC Bournemouth on the opening weekend, they beat Crystal Palace on home soil before being narrowly edged out by Leicester City.
But with games against Liverpool, Arsenal and Tottenham Hotspur also looming on the horizon, Wilder is aware the picture at Bramall Lane could quickly change. His words, both before and after the visit to London, provide an insight into the environment he has cultivated behind the scenes since being appointed in 2016. Despite publicly insisting outside criticism does not permeate the dressing room, Wilder is adept at using it to motivate his players. And, by constantly highlighting their personality traits, ensure they remain grounded and aware of the challenges ahead.
"The shape of the team, we've been happy with," he said. "I think we're getting the balance right but it counts for nothing if it doesn't continue."