Sheffield United: Why Chris Wilder will not be banned from the touchline for the Steel City derby

Chris Wilder will be on the touchline at Hillsborough: Simon Bellis/Sportimage
Chris Wilder will be on the touchline at Hillsborough: Simon Bellis/Sportimage

Sheffield United manager Chris Wilder has admitted his relief at avoiding a touchline ban for Sunday’s visit to Sheffield Wednesday.

Wilder feared he could be forced to watch the match from the stands after being ordered from the technical area during last weekend’s meeting with Norwich City.

Carlos Carvahal, the Sheffield Wednesday manager

Carlos Carvahal, the Sheffield Wednesday manager

But the Football Association, who yesterday confirmed midfielder Paul Coutts also faces no further action after being cited for an off-the-ball incident towards the end of the 1-0 defeat, have cleared Wilder to take his place in the dug-out following talks with referee Scott Duncan.

“I’m a touchline manager so, yes, of course I’m pleased,” Wilder said. “I think the FA have taken the right decision.

“There were a lot of things going on in the game that were very frustrating. We spoke about that at the time.

“I had a word with the ref afterwards, who is someone I have a great deal of respect for, and he knew that too. I’m glad it’s all been sorted out and, like I say, I think it’s reached the proper conclusion.

Paul Coutts is free to play in the Steel City derby: Simon Bellis/Sportimage

Paul Coutts is free to play in the Steel City derby: Simon Bellis/Sportimage

“It’s all done and dusted now. We can move on.”

The FA are likely to have taken Wilder’s previous good character into consideration when deciding their reaction to Duncan’s report. The 49-year-old admitted he had “done wrong” after encroaching into City’s technical area to return the ball but insisted he had been provoked by the opposition’s time-wasting and gamesmanship.

Carlos Carvahal, Wilder’s counterpart at Hillsborough, served a two match touchline ban following an altercation with Bolton Wanderers’ Phil Parkinson earlier this season. But the Portuguese was also sent-off during Wednesday’s trip to Aston Villa last term.

“I’m pleased I’m going to be down there with the lads,” Wilder said. “I’m not really someone who likes to be away from it. But I’m not too sure they’re going to be able to hear me anyway, what with the noise of the crowd. We all know it’s going to be loud.”

“It’s a passionate game and things happen,” he added. “I didn’t hurt or insult anybody. I made that point to the referee. I was only reacting to something that was going on during the match itself.

“I shouldn’t have done it but, in the heat of battle, it’s an emotional game.”