Since, Chris Wilder’s return to Bramall Lane in the summer of 2016, where he was appointed as club manager, compared to his two stints he had at the club during his playing career. It seems Sheffield United fans have never had more confidence in a manager in consideration of Neil Warnock and Dave Bassett.
Following an extraordinary season with Northampton last season winning the League Two title, he came to the attention of United Chairman Kevin McCabe, who won the race to get Wilder’s signature.
Wilder may have had a shaky start to the campaign, by only winning one game out of their first six games of the season. However, Him and his side were soon to end their bad run of form and kick on with the season.
Currently, the Blades are sitting comfortably at the top of the League One table on 75 points. Eight points clear of second placed Fleetwood Town.
With nine games to go it looks very likely that Wilder is going to achieve something, that the five other managers who managed the League One side couldn’t achieve during their time at the club. Which was promotion to the Championship.
But how much better off is Wilder at this stage of the season?
Under Danny Wilson, the Blades were very unfortunate not to get promotion back to the championship in their first campaign in the League One. As, Wilson lead his side to 90 points, following a notable 27 wins from 46 games. However, their impressive 90 points only managed to place them third in the league, which eventually lead to the Blades losing the play-off final to Yorkshire rivals Huddersfield.
That year left United stunned, as they became the first and only League One team in history to attain 90 points in one season, and not be rewarded with promotion.
The next three years for the Blades weren’t as successful. Their next best season was the 2012/13 campaign under Wilson, as well as caretaker manager Chris Morgan following Wilson’s sacking in April. The Red and White Wizards finished fifth that season, earning 75 points. The same accumulation Wilder has already gained this season with still nine games to play.
Last season, fans of the club witnessed an all-time low at Bramall Lane. Despite his seemingly impeccable credentials, Nigel Adkins failed to even reach a playoff position and finished on 66 points, placing them eleventh. That season, turned out to be their worst league finish since 1983.
When asked about Chris Wilder, United fan Josh Wootten responded: “He’s really brought the passion back to the club…he’s come in and changed the system, put three at the back and were now playing way more exciting football.”
He further stated, how Wilder being a born blade himself, has returned to the club as manager and really injected enthusiasm back into the supporters and players, which has resulted in wins.
Subsequently, it’s not only the fans that have full support behind Wilder. Club captain Billy Sharp expressed his praise for Wilder by stating: “Everybody is playing with a smile on their face at the moment…There is a big difference. The main thing is out there on the training pitch, the gaffer wants it like a game day and that creates good habits. Habits that we are taking into the matches themselves.”
To conclude, with the average number of points needed to get an automatic promotion spot from the League One in the past five years United have been in the division being 87. Wilder technically should only have to win four out of the last nine games of the season.
Nonetheless, if Wilder’s fantastic form and team spirit continues there is no reason why his side can’t exceed the average, and even go onto greater success in the Championship next season.