Chris Wilder has praised the attitude and application of his Sheffield United side after insisting the connection between players and fans can help propel them to promotion this season.
Almost 28,000 fans packed Bramall Lane for Saturday’s 1-1 draw with promotion rivals Scunthorpe United, and a similar attendance is expected this weekend as Wilder’s table-toppers host third-placed Bolton Wanderers.
United’s decision to recall some of their visitors’ ticket allocation, and offer them to Blades fans in the lower tier of the Bramall Lane end, could see an even bigger crowd and Wilder insisted: “The supporters want to see forward thinking, positive football and this group never gives anything less.
“We’ve got a knowledgeable crowd and if they see the players putting in a shift they will back them to the hilt.
“And they are doing.
“Sheffield is a footballing city, with two good clubs, and the people here love their football.
“And when the players are walking off, getting a standing ovation after a 1-1 draw, I think that tells the story.”
Wilder described the attitude of players and fans alike as “outstanding” after a dominant display against Scunthorpe kept them five points clear at the top of League One.
“Scunthorpe are a good side, they have got a good squad and they will have been delighted to leave with a point,” the Blades boss said.
“’They deserve credit for sticking in the game in both halves. But they’ve changed their shape for the first time this season for us and still we’ve made a very good side look second best.
“There was a little bit of disappointment in the dressing room, but I have told them there is no need for that.
“That was a proper performance by my team.
“We are disappointed not to have scored more, in the first half we could have been 2-0 or 3-0 up.
“But the attitude of the team, the supporters and the club has been outstanding.”
United’s U23s, meanwhile, gave themselves a good chance of progressing in the Premier League Cup by beating Birmingham City 3-1 at Solihull Moors last night.
Marc McNulty opened the scoring for United when he finished well from Louis Reed’s pass, and Regan Slater made it 2-0 with a similarly impressive finish.
Birmingham’s Jack Storer halved the deficit just before half-time, but United did go into the break two ahead through Jake Wright, who recently returned from his loan spell at Southport.
The return leg is at Bramall Lane next Monday, kicking off at 7pm.