Manager Chris Wilder has warned his Sheffield United side that only points, rather than plaudits, will satisfy him ahead of Saturday’s South Yorkshire derby against Barnsley.
United, who began life in the Championship after last season’s title win with a 1-0 victory over Brentford, have since lost two difficult away games at Middlesbrough and Cardiff City - the former in controversial circumstances, after a legitimate late equaliser was incorrectly ruled out for offside.
Goals from Sean Morrison and former Blades loanee Nathaniel Mendez-Laing secured a 2-0 victory for Neil Warnock’s Cardiff on Tuesday evening, and Wilder admitted: “Compliments from the opposition manager don’t sit well with me. I want points on the table.
“We’ve had two tough away games, I understand that, but I believe we’ve been in both games and the games have been decided by their quality in the box.
“From box to box we’ve been fine, we’ve competed, but games are ultimately decided by what happens in both boxes and we’ve come up short.
“We must improve to gain points on the road.”
Wilder, who admitted he must step-up his recruitment drive after defender Richard Stearman’s injury at Cardiff, added: “We’re no longer playing against League One players.
“A lot of these boys we’re up against have played in the Premier League, but we can’t complain. The Championship is where we want to be and we’ve got to hold our own.
“We need to be better. It was okay against Cardiff but I don’t want to be okay.
“I don’t want to have a drink with Neil after the game and him tell us we’ll be fine.
“I want to be better than that.”