Sheffield United owner Kevin McCabe hails ‘perfect timing’ as Wilder returns ‘home’

Chris Wilder, the new manager of Sheffield United, with co-owner Kevin McCabe and Alan Knill, assistant manager.
Chris Wilder, the new manager of Sheffield United, with co-owner Kevin McCabe and Alan Knill, assistant manager.
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Kevin McCabe is hoping Blades fan Chris Wilder can help lead Sheffield United back to the Premier League.

Wilder left Northampton Town this week to return to his hometown club, looking to succeed where numerous managers like Danny Wilson, Nigel Clough and Nigel Adkins had failed.

That’s get out of League One, before building a platform to challenge for top-flight football once more.

Blades co-owner McCabe remembers Wilder playing in the Dave Bassett era, and has turned to one of United’s favourite sons to try and revive the club’s fortunes.

“It’s been a busy few days, making decisions for changes,” said McCabe, who axed Adkins after United finished a disappointing 11th in League One.

“Chris Wilder has been a young man on my list for some years, one that I obviously saw play in Dave Bassett’s era.

“A guy with the background and benefit of understanding the ethos of our club, which will play a big part in taking us forward in the years ahead.

“The ambitions for Sheffield United remain to get back back to the top of the tree, the Premier League, which we very much hope will happen with Chris leading us.”

Wilder was close to joining Charlton Athletic earlier in the week, before United stepped in to get their man.

“It’s a top achievement to get Chris, he has been on our list for some years,” said McCabe, speaking at a media conference at Bramall Lane to introduce Wilder and his No 2 Alan Knill, the former Rotherham United manager.

“The timing has been perfect, Chris showing his true colours as a top class manager, not just with Northampton Town but Oxford United as well.

“Things have come together, a co-incidence of timing.

“We all accept we have had a very disappointing and frustrating season, in spite of the best efforts of all.

“There’s no question we have employed a person here who is fit to take us up through more than one division, he is well qualified, anyone who looks at his CV will recognise that.”