Sheffield United manager Chris Wilder has been speaking this week about how he values character more than cash in today’s game.
Having chosen his transfer targets carefully since arriving at Bramall Lane as manager back in May 2016, Wilder boasts a win percentage of 53.4% with 55 wins in 103 games so far. That success rate took us up as League One Champions in 2016/17 and the Blades were only six points shy of the Play-Off spots in 2017/18 as we entertained thoughts of back to back promotions.
Key to that success has been the team spirit fostered by Wilder and his ‘no fear’ approach to facing sides that on paper are arguably stronger, and most certainly stronger on a financial front with the fees and wages they spend.
That’s not to say Wilder hasn’t spent some cash, but certainly not in the realms of other sides we more than admirably competed with last term.
Fans shouldn’t be expecting him to change his ways either based on a recent interview with the Star as he continues to believe that team spirit and a players character are far more important than fees paid when it comes to building for success.
“The players have to bridge that gap, we have to bridge that gap in a creative way in how we play. What we do on the training ground at Shirecliffe, Monday to Friday. We have to bridge that gap, we are not in that elite group. I am not being critical of anything, but we are not. We are looking forward to the challenge.”
Having punched above our weight last season, Wilder will be looking for us to repeat that this term and he’s confident we can do just that as we can lean on the experiences of last year and the confidence that should give the players.
Fans will obviously have their own hopes ahead of 2018/19 and anticipation and expectation will only rise further as a few new signings are announced, and pre-season progresses towards the big kick-off.