Chris Wilder has 'no excuses' after Covid-hit Sheffield United loss

SHEFFIELD UNITED manager Chris Wilder refused to use the pre-match revelation that some of the club’s players and staff had recorded several positive Covid-19 tests as an excuse after seeing his side suffer an 11th defeat by a single-goal margin this season in a 1-0 reverse at Burnley.

Chris Wilder. Picture: Sportimage.

The only goal of the game arrived just after the half-hour mark when Clarets captain Ben Mee headed home.

Wilder revealed ahead of kick-off at Turf Moor that two unnamed players and a number of backroom staff members had fallen ill with coronavirus following testing - on a night when United named just seven substitutes.

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The Blades chief insists that he had no qualms in the game taking place despite the positive tests.

He said: “It is going to affect quite a lot of teams. I think five or six backroom staff have been hit by it and obviously players as well.

“It is a little bit different to the ‘perfect storm’ last year which went for us in terms of big moments and avoiding injuries. It seems to be the opposite this year, but we have to dust ourselves down and crack on and dust ourselves down and go again and prepare for the next game at Crystal Palace.

“There is no excuses. They weren’t available and we had enough out there to get a result and unfortunately, we didn’t.”

On his side’s display, which saw them enjoy 63 per cent of possession, but fail to overly hurt a solid Burnley side, Wilder added: “We had more possession and in one way, I am okay with that but possession does not win games of football if you concede from a set-piece, especially against Burnley.

“That is disappointing. They had a better start than ours and Aaron (Ramsdale) made a couple of decent saves in the first ten minutes.

“After that, we got a foothold in the game, but yet again it is just the final third quality we needed to find and cutting edge to unlock an outstanding goalkeeper, excellent back four and a very organised side.

“We had a lot of possession and ball in the second half, but we did not really hurt them to open them up.

“It was a really disappointing goal we conceded from our point of view and they did enough to win a game of football in the second half and that is a sign of experience and why they got the result."