A RECURRING theme of Chris Wilder’s eventful Bramall Lane tenure has been Sheffield United’s prized ability to hit back from setbacks at the first available juncture.
The Blades may have taken something away from Saturday’s South Yorkshire derby at Rotherham United, but Wilder was far from impressed with his side’s efforts and refused to gloss over what he viewed to be a sub-standard showing in a 2-2 draw.
Following a weekend when a number of the Blades’ top-six rivals picked up three points, Wilder is demanding a strong and immediate response to right the wrongs of Saturday when they play at Griffin Park tonight.
Critical of his side’s “naive” performance against the Millers, Wilder said: “We have to get back to what makes us a good side when we are not at our best. Saturday was nothing to do with tactics. It is back to basics for us and doing what we are good at.
“Very rarely do we get outbattled. We have to right the wrongs of Saturday”
Meanwhile, Wilder has issued a warning to his players that no-one’s position in the team is sacrosanct, despite his side being in the promotion mix for the second successive season.
We have to get back to what makes us a good side when we are not at our best. Saturday was nothing to do with tactics. It is back to basics for us and doing what we are good at.Sheffield United manager, Chris Wilder
And with more squad options than last year, the Blades chief admits that he has some ‘big decisions’ to make ahead of finalising his line-up tonight.
He added: “What is obvious to the players and what I have said to them is that nobody is bullet-proof.
“Right the way through, we have got good players who are ready to step in such as George (Baldock) and Marvin Johnson, who was outstanding for us during the week, but he has not had much opportunity due to the performance of Enda (Stevens).
“Him, (Richard) Stearman, (John) Lundstram and (Paul) Coutts are pushing (for a place) and (Conor) Washington is certainly pushing.
“Players cannot produce performances like Saturday on a consistent basis because it makes me look a mug if I do not change it around. I have got some big decisions to make.”
Last six games: Brentford LLLWLL; Sheffield United LDWLDD.
Referee: S Martin (Staffordshire).
Last time: Brentford 1 Sheffield United 1, March 30, 2018; Championship.