Sheffield United: ‘I decide who we sign, unlike some of my rivals’

Chris Wilder with Kevin McCabe (centre) and assistant manager Alan Knill (right) '�2016 Sport Image all rights reserved
Chris Wilder with Kevin McCabe (centre) and assistant manager Alan Knill (right) '�2016 Sport Image all rights reserved

Chris Wilder, the Sheffield United manager, has thanked Bramall Lane’s hierarchy for refusing to interfere with his transfer strategy.

Contrasting the behaviour of co-owners Kevin McCabe and HRH Prince Abdullah bin Musa’ad bin Abdul Aziz with some of their counterparts in the EFL, Wilder admitted his position would become untenable if that control was ever undermined.

“We just look at players who we think can do a job for us,” Wilder, dismissing suggestions he is averse to recruiting from overseas, said. “Players who can fit into the culture of how we work. There are all sorts of markets you can look at and we do. But, at the end of the day, players have to fit in with us. Not the other way around.”

“As soon as you go down that route, like Charlton for instance, with what happened there, it’s a problem,” Wilder added. “All of sudden, people are signing players you don’t want. I don’t say everyone I recommend gets passed from a financial point of view. I understand owners take an interest and quite rightly so. But as soon as it goes into that realm, where people start coming in you don’t actually want, well, it’s goodnight and God bless as far as I’m concerned. That really is that.”

As well as disproving the theory that McCabe, not United’s coaching staff, instigated Ched Evans’ return to South Yorkshire earlier this summer, Wilder’s comments also shed further light on why he rejected an invitation to take charge at The Valley before joining United 15 months ago.

“They (the owners) know the people we look at and that we’ll always do our best,” Wilder said. “I’ll always pose the question and try and maximise what we’ve got. I don’t think there’s anything wrong with that.

“We’re always trying to push the club forward and improve ourselves. I think that’s the right way to be because nobody wants to stand still.

“Basically, we try to spend our money wisely within the budget that we’ve got. That doesn’t mean to say we aren’t ambitious here because we are. But you should never do anything that puts the club at risk. You do see it happen elsewhere and you know it’s not right.”