Chris Wilder set for Sheffield United return but faces daunting fixture list from hell

Arlo Gibbons


Chris Wilder is on the verge of making a long-awaited return to Sheffield United, but the start of his second stint won’t be easy.

talkSPORT understands Paul Heckingbottom is set to be sacked by the Blades today following their 5-0 defeat to Burnley.

Wilder is on course to seal a return to Bramall LaneGetty

They sit rock bottom of the Premier League table with just one win to their name, with Heckingbottom the first sacking of the season.

Wilder is the leading contender to replace him in the Blades hotseat nearly three years after he initially left the role in 2021.

He was key in guiding the side to Premier League promotion and is a huge fan favourite but his return won’t be without its challenges.

Should Wilder be brought in swiftly, his first game back in charge could very well be the visit of Liverpool on Wednesday night.

The Reds are second in the league and will travel to Bramall Lane off the back of a dramatic, late 4-3 win over Fulham on Sunday.

It will also see Wilder reunite with Jurgen Klopp, who hit out at the former’s opposition to the five-substitute rule amid an injury crisis in what was a heated interview with BT Sport reporter Des Kelly.

They return to their home turf four days later to welcome Brentford, who most recently beat relegation candidates Luton Town 3-1.

Fixtures will continue to pile up on the approach to Christmas and another tough upcoming opponent for the Blades is Chelsea.

Liverpool-reacts-next-chris-864011934.jpg?strip=all&w=960″ alt=”” width=”960″ height=”647″>Klopp is in line to meet Wilder on the touchline once againGettyWilder won 27% of his Premier League games in charge of Sheffield United

The Blues won just their fourth home league game of 2023 on Sunday when they beat Brighton 3-2 but show signs of improvement.

Unai Emery’s top four-chasing Aston Villa host Sheffield United three days before Christmas Day in the late Friday night kick-off.

Villa dropped points at Bournemouth but recently beat Tottenham and are the second highest scorers in the league on 33 goals, with Manchester City leading on 36.

Sheffield United play host to Luton on Boxing Day in what could be a huge six-pointer as both sides look to get out the relegation zone.

Just four days later though, the Blades face the gruelling task of a trip to reigning champions City, who are still well in the title race despite three draws on the bounce.

Wilder faces a huge job upon his return to the Steel City, with wins desperately needed if they are to avoid relegation.

Given the strength of the league this season it could be too little, too late, but he certainly has the credentials to help boost their chances.


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