Sheffield United: Who wouldn't want to come here? - Chris Wilder on Blades as an attractive prospect for potential signings
Although they are about to enter a world where clubs routinely pay salaries of over £100,000 a week, Chris Wilder is confident Sheffield United will prove an attractive proposition for players in this summer's transfer market.
Wilder, the United manager, is pressing ahead with efforts to strengthen his squad following their promotion to the Premier League last term.
Despite accepting he can not financially compete with the majority of teams in the division, Wilder cited United's crowd and attack-minded football as potential selling points.
"If I was still out there, I'd be looking at what we've been doing and thinking 'I wouldn't mind being a part of that.' Especially if I was a forward," he said. "Who wouldn't want to be out there in front of our fans, with the atmosphere they create? And, the numbers of chances we created last season, the commitment the lads showed to get in on goal, that's something I think most people would like to get a piece of."
Reaching the top-flight of English football is estimated to be worth around £170m for United, who last appeared at the highest level 12 years ago. But the growth in broadcasting revenues, particularly from overseas, means the division is now markedly different to 2007, when United were controversially relegated following the Carlos Tevez Affair.
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Given the disparity between the earnings of heavyweights such as Manchester City, Arsenal and Chelsea compared to those expected to battle it out at the other end of the table, Wilder has chosen to focus his recruitment drive on players from the Championship with the ability to step-up. But after emphasising the importance of character, he could also decide to sign at least one tried and tested name to aid United's survival effort.
"We want to build properly," Wilder said. "We want to bring the right people in. And those are people who want to come here for the right reasons. Because they are going to be proud to pull on the shirt and represent the club.
"If that isn't their motivation, then they're not going to be for us. As I've always maintained, we're not scared to say 'no' to a deal if we feel it isn't right for us. But we always try and do our homework on people."