Chris Wilder lays down pre-season challenges as Sheffield United set for a culture reset

Sheffield United manager Chris Wilder is determined to not have a repeat of last season’s horror showing in the Premier League, which was a cause of poor preparation.

Many will say the damage was done before the top flight campaign even started when two of their most important players from the promotion season, Sander Berge and Iliman Ndiaye, were sold just days before the Premier League began.

It wasn’t the fact they were sold: it was the timing which was unbelievably bad and left gaping holes in the starting eleven which were never filled. And this is an issue supporters have raised for many months as they fear the same thing could happen this summer with the likes of Oli Arblaster and Gustavo Hamer as they gear up for a bounce back promotion push.

Another problem which was evident last season was the fitness issues in terms of injuries suffered and actual endurance during the game.

While having a lack of possession certainly wears on a team as the season goes on, but, running low on energy was a major for United from the get go. The Blades vitally threw away five points in the final ten minutes of matches across their first five Premier League games last term.

SHEFFIELD, ENGLAND – DECEMBER 09: Chris Wilder, Manager of Sheffield United, reacts during the Premier League match between Sheffield United and Brentford FC at Bramall Lane on December 09, 2023 in Sheffield, England. (Photo by Michael Regan/Getty Images)

Chris Wilder is ready to stamp out the weaknesses of Sheffield United players during pre-season training which plagued them last season

Chris Wilder does not want those demons to carry over into this coming campaign. Speaking to the Yorkshire Post about the club’s pre-season plans, he is determined to iron out these weaknesses way before the Championship fixtures get underway.

“[The players] had all their individual meetings and they know what it’s going to look like. Get ready. Don’t underestimate what this is going to be like because we’ve got to set the bar high this summer in everything we do and get back to the standards. If they fall by the wayside, they’ll not be involved.

“The players I’ve got now, the Robinson’s, the Bogle’s, the Hamer’s: they’ll love those challenges. I think they’re really looking forward to it. They have to recuperate and get their heads right but on the first day of pre-season we’ll be bright and buzzing and back at it.

“You can’t be a victim; nobody can feel sorry for themselves [after last season]. The culture will be a reset. It’s going to be a tough, demanding pre-season – possibly the toughest they’ve ever encountered.”

As things stand, Sheffield United’s pre-season journey begins on the 13th of July against York City and hopefully by the time that comes around the Blades will have a few new signings through the door as they face the biggest squad rebuild in the club’s recent history, and potentially all under new ownership with a takeover edging ever closer.

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