Kevin McCabe last night revealed Sheffield United rejected overtures from potential candidates “at home and abroad” in order to appoint Chris Wilder as their new manager.
McCabe, speaking after the 48-year-old was presented to the media yesterday, also shed further light on the reasons behind Nigel Adkins’ departure last week.
Insisting that Wilder’s achievements in the technical area, not the fact he is a supporter and former United player, had seen him emerge as the “unanimous choice” to take charge, McCabe said: “The way football works, myself and my colleagues had approaches from people both in this country and abroad.
“But our mind was always, if we could get Chris, then it would be him. There was no emotion or sentiment.
“But rather what he has done coming up the ladder. What he did at Northampton, when lots of people really started to take notice, was remarkable.”
Wilder, who won the League Two title at Sixfields last term, has also enjoyed successful spells with Oxford United, Alfreton and Halifax Town.
McCabe continued: Chris has been on our list for a very long time, you always track managers.
“It was this time around when everything came together. He proved it to himself and also ourselves.
“He’s not been sticking his hand up making discreet or indiscreet calls about coming here. He’s been sensible enough to think, if I do well, they might want me. And that’s impressive.”
Adkins was sacked after leading United to their lowest league finish since the Eighties.
“Nigel is a very nice guy but we were getting ever frustrated because there was no sign of the team truly being turned around,” McCabe said.
“There was no desire to change managers but we reflected, towards the end of last season and from the last game, whether if we didn’t would we be risking an opportunity next season.
“Then it was a case of, weighing-up if we were going to change, who was the right person to take over?
“It was a decision taken very close to the final game of the season, when we had to move quickly. The season had only just ended when the final decision was made, If we decided, regrettably, that Nigel must go then I have to bring my colleagues together, because it is a co-ownership, and then see what we can do. We had some very tasty names but one was obvious to me.”