Wilder's anger at disallowed goal as Sheffield United are edged out by Middlesbrough

Sheffield United manager Chris Wilder on the sidelines at the Riverside Stadium
Sheffield United manager Chris Wilder on the sidelines at the Riverside Stadium
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Sheffield United manager Chris Wilder bemoaned a "very, very poor decision" after his Blades were controversially denied a point from their Sky Bet Championship trip to Middlesbrough.

It was Rudy Gestede's 21st-minute header that settled the 1-0 home win, the lofty Benin international nodding Patrick Bamford's chipped assist over Jamal Blackman, but after the match the focus was on a goal that never was.

Two minutes into stoppage time, from a free-kick, Blades defender Jack O'Connell shaped his body to guide the ball beyond Darren Randolph, with a helpful deflection off Boro man Dael Fry.

But as the large travelling party turned delirious, the linesman's flag cut through their joy.

It seemed midfielder Chris Basham had been adjudged offside but it was difficult for anyone in attendance to establish what had really occurred, with the confusion and disappointment perhaps hitting United boss Wilder harder than most.

After watching the Blades' long unbeaten run - their last loss was to Fleetwood in January - come to an end in controversial circumstances, he said: "He started off in an offside position but moved back into an onside position and then impeded their centre-half from heading the ball.

"Are we going to just let their centre-half head it clear in the last minute at Middlesbrough when we're after a result when we've been unbeaten for about... three years?

"You just can't get those decisions wrong.

"I'm not saying we've come here and dominated the game, as this is and will be a tough place to come with the players they've got and a new manager in place.

"But when we play like we did in the second half I think it was a just reward to get something from the game and that's been taken away from us by a very, very poor decision."

Boro boss Garry Monk, celebrating his first three-point haul of the fledgling season, thought the whole incident was avoidable.

"I'm told it's the correct decision," he said. "It wasn't a foul (for the free-kick) in the first place, the lad tripped over his own heels.

"We played against a very good side that's full of confidence and had an exceptional year last year. It was never going to be easy today.

"They're well organised and well coached so credit to Chris there for what they're doing - I think they're going to have a fantastic season."

On his match-winner Gestede, who reminded Monk of his ability at a key time as the Teesside club have recently invested millions in new strikers Britt Assombalonga and Martin Braithwaite, the former Leeds and Swansea manager said: "No-one is forgotten in my mind.

"The squad's vitally important and that's why we have it. We've had a big transition with players coming in and going out as we try and shape the squad to what we need.

"An excellent performance (from Gestede) and they're willing each other to do well. That's the mentality we're trying to create and it's important everyone's ready."