Sheffield United manager Chris Wilder has given an emphatic and clear response when asked about Leeds United’s promotion hopes.
Marcelo Bielsa’s side face Derby in the second leg of their play-off semi final at Elland Road on Wednesday night, leading 1-0 from the first leg thanks to Kemar Roofe’s strike ten minutes into the second half of the first leg at Pride Park on Saturday.
Wilder and his Sheffield United side are already planning for a return to the Premier League after finishing second behind Champions Norwich in the regular season, and it seems he has little concern for the outcome of the Championship play-offs.
The Blades beat Leeds to that second automatic promotion spot in the regular, and speaking at the end of season LMA awards where he was named the Sir Alex Ferguson Manager of the Year, Wilder was quoted by BBC journalist Simon Stone as saying he had little concern about Leeds with his own side already up.
Chris Wilder of @SUFC_tweets wins Championship manager of year. Asked for thoughts on possibility of two Yorkshire sides in Premier League next season. “I am not bothered about Leeds. We are up.” pic.twitter.com/EbQWhuMd9N
— Simon Stone (@sistoney67) May 14, 2019
Should Leeds overcome Derby on Wednesday night, they will then play Aston Villa at Wembley on Monday 27th May for a place in the Premier League, after Dean Smith’s side beat West Brom 4-3 on penalties on Tuesday night following a 2-2 aggregate draw in the tie.
Given the rivalry between Sheffield United and Leeds this season, you feel this is Wilder’s way of rubbing salt into the Leeds wound here, by reminding them he and his side are already up.
A clash between the two in the top flight next year is an enticing proposition, even more so now after these comments, though you feel Aston Villa may have something to say about that.