The welcome Sheffield United skipper Billy Sharp believes Middlesbrough boss Chris Wilder should receive on Lane return

Billy Sharp, the Sheffield United skipper, says that former manager Chris Wilder should receive a “magnificent reception” when he returns to Bramall Lane with Middlesbrough on Tuesday evening – warning his Blades teammates to play the game rather than the occasion.
Watch more of our videos on Shots! 
and live on Freeview channel 276
Visit Shots! now

The Sheffield-born Blades fan led his hometown club to two promotions during his time in charge, also helping to secure a ninth-placed finish in the Premier League before leaving a year ago.

The Blades were relegated back to the Championship last season and after a good run of form under Wilder’s predecessor Paul Heckingbottom, have put themselves in contention for a place in the play-offs.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

But Wilder’s Boro are also in the promotion picture, and moved a place and a point above United on Saturday with a 2-1 win over fellow top-six hopefuls Luton Town.

And Sharp, who was made United’s captain by Wilder and was another key man in his club’s rise through the divisions, said: “He should get a magnificent reception … for 30 seconds, and then it’s game time.

“Our fans will want to beat him and he’ll want to beat us. We’ve just got to play the game, not anything else.

Chris Wilder and Billy Sharp pictured after Sheffield United won the Sky Bet League One title in April 2017. Nathan Stirk/GettyChris Wilder and Billy Sharp pictured after Sheffield United won the Sky Bet League One title in April 2017. Nathan Stirk/Getty
Chris Wilder and Billy Sharp pictured after Sheffield United won the Sky Bet League One title in April 2017. Nathan Stirk/Getty

Middlesbrough are a good side; he’s got them playing really well, a bit like he had us playing.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

“It’s going to be a great game again, and hopefully we can come out on top. But if we don’t win the game, make sure we get something out of it.”

Sharp scored United’s goal against Nottingham Forest on Friday evening, but it proved not to be the winner as Forest scored an injury-time equaliser to earn a point.