A selection of quotes and predictions about Sheffield United for the upcoming Premier League season.
“The surprise package of last season, Sheffield United came close to European qualification in their first season back in the top-flight and our writers feel they are in for another solid showing this campaign.Chris Wilder moved quickly to replace goalkeeper Dean Henderson, who excelled on loan from Manchester United over the past two seasons, with the promising Aaron Ramsdale from Bournemouth already this summer. Savvy, no-nonsense business, but what else do you expect? Prediction: 11th”
Reasons to be cheerful: They’ve already shown they can adapt to the demands of Premier League football with the minimum of fuss. Why can’t they repeat that trick in 2020/21? The Blades lost some of their bounce after the restart but still showed enough to suggest they could punch above their weight once again this time around. The capture of Aaron Ramsdale looks astute business as Wilder works to fill the gap left by Dean Henderson.
Reasons to be fearful: Any creeping signs of ‘second season syndrome’ leading to a few grumbles from the more fickle elements of the Blades’ fanbase. Even if Utd fail to scale the same heights of 2019/20, a season of mid-table consolidation would still be a fine achievement. Wilder’s novel tactical approach rightly won widespread plaudits last year. He’ll know more than anyone the importance of not getting found out as he continues to fine-tune his squad.
Key man: Sander Berge
“I predicted the Blades would stay up last season because of Chris Wilder’s management but a fully deserved ninth place was a wonderful achievement.Not sure the second season will bring such a high placing but still feel an outstanding manager will avoid any serious hazards. Prediction 14th”
Phil McNulty, BBC
“The loss of Dean Henderson is significant, but in Aaron Ramsdale Sheffield United have signed the next best thing. He’s 22, he excelled in a Bournemouth team that gave him plenty of practice and he’s an academy graduate at the club so will take no time to settle in. “
Daniel Story, The I
“There is no doubting that Sheffield United overachieved last season and, while they deserve huge credit for that, it is also important to remember that their squad is still largely the one that got promoted from the Championship – with a few players left from the League One days too.
Chris Wilder has them organised in a way that they will be always difficult to beat and so we cannot see them suffering second season syndrome to its full extent, but it will be a struggle to replicate last season’s success and they may be closer to a relegation battle than a European one this time around. Prediction 14th”
Barney Corkhill, Sports Mole
“If McBurnie starts hitting the net more often in his second season at the highest level, then United should be in a better place. Still, buying another forward would increase their chances of taking their chances regularly. Prediction 11th”
“The Blades have added some lovely talents to their ranks completely under the radar. Derby full-backs Jayden Bogle and Max Lowe have arrived to reinforce the backline, while Aaron Ramsdale replaced Man Utd loanee Dean Henderson between the sticks. Chelsea hot prospect Ethan Ampadu is a versatile star to add into the mix.Chris Wilder is padding out an impressive squad with shrewd talents that should keep his beloved team safely in the top half. Prediction 10th”
Micheal Potts, Radio Times
“Will be solid at the back but lost Henderson. They still wont concede many but my worry for them as always is where the goals are going to come from because you can’t see the defenders chipping in with as many goals as they did last time. 12th, that’s where they are going to finish”
Football Social Daily
“Most people see Sheffield United dropping off from last season, but their approach is unique enough to continue to pose teams problems and they may be fighting for a Europa League spot again this season. Prediction 11th”
Vishnu Anandraj , The Football Faithful
“Sheffield United will be the biggest fall from grace. Chris Wilder’s side performed miracles last year but I’m expecting a dip this time around. Their form after the restart was mostly poor and I think they may struggle without the presence of a reliable goalscorer. “
Harry Diamond, The Football Faithful
“Season Prediction: 11th – Sheffield United overachieved massively last season and face a tough task repeating their 9th-place finish with other teams strengthening significantly this summer.”