Chris Wilder, the Sheffield United manager, has admitted to questioning his own expansive approach before deciding it provides the best opportunity of achieving back to back promotions.
United, last season’s League One title winners, moved to within three points of the Championship play-offs positions after beating Yorkshire rivals Leeds four days ago.
Although the result breathed new life into their top six challenge following a chequered sequence of results, Wilder revealed winning just two of their previous 13 games had prompted him to consider whether United’s policy of all out attack risked costing them dear in the race for Premier League football, only to decide it suits the character of Bramall Lane’s first team squad.
“Maybe, a criticism of myself is that I have to adjust a bit,” he said. “Maybe I look back at the end of the season and think in the last five minutes, perhaps we should be more cautious and safe.
“But the attitude of the group is to take the handbrake off and go for it. To the point that (against Leeds) Chris Basham is on the wing in the last five minutes, Ryan Leonard is flying through the middle and, in the last 30 seconds and (goalkeeper) Jamal Blackman was probably looking to get on the scoresheet too. We like to go for the jugular, especially when we have teams on the rack. We want to get on the front foot.”
United face Leicester City in the fifth round of the FA Cup on Friday before returning to Championship action when Queens Park Rangers visit South Yorkshire on Tuesday night. Preparations for those games are taking place against a backdrop of uncertainty surrounding the club’s ownership after it emerged HRH Prince Abdullah Bin Mosa’ad Abdulaziz Al Saud is attempting to purchase fellow co-owner Kevin McCabe’s 50 per cent stake in the club. However Wilder, speaking before the victory over Leeds, insisting he is focused “totally on football” rather than developments at boardroom level.