Who is Sheffield's worst enemy

CRAIG HOPE: Sheffield United slipping to the middle of the table would be an injustice ...

Chris Wilder has said Sheffield United could take legal action if they miss out on Europe by two points - but on the evidence of that defeat at Newcastle they'll be good to go so close.

The manager made the revelation the night before Sunday's game while discussing the injustice of their "ghost goal" during Wednesday's tie at Aston Villa.

The Blades were denied a first half opener when Hawk-Eye “couldn't spot Villa goalkeeper Orjan Nyland with the ball in his net from Ollie Norwood’s free kick. But while it was technology that malfunctioned at Villa Park, it was Wilder Player who went wrong at St James’.

Sheffield United suffered an under-par performance against Newcastle at St James ’Park

Defender John Egan was adept in the second half when the Magpies went on to win 3-0


Yes the game was goalless when they were reduced to 10 men following John Egan's sacking at the start of the second half, but the tone had already set for a performance so far from what we have come can be expected that the broader s brilliant side, always high on energy and ideas.

The sight of Norwood, usually so efficiently and precisely owned, misplaced a string that goes by early, alarming and wild hearing frustration from the sidelines.

How negligent the catch was and the Sander Berge soon rolled another ball straight out of play - you can only assume that the assistant referee was not his intended target.

Oliver Norwood misplaced a string that goes off early, as did fellow midfielder Sander Berge

They lacked care in the final third too, and Newcastle goalkeeper Martin Dubravka barely had a save to make, despite a few spells that pressure the visiting.

Even then, when they were low on inspiration, they kept lifting aimless balls on the forehead of Newcastle's grateful center-backs.

In short, you were your own worst enemy as evidenced by the two moments that changed the game.

Egan was shown a second yellow when unnecessarily assigning an advantage to Joelinton and then pulled back to the Brazilian as he cleared his way on goal.

That court's mistake was bad, but nothing compared to Enda Stevens' brain goes out four minutes later the defender somehow making a routine cross look like the horniest of supplies as he swiped in the open air to allow the excellent Allan Saint- Maximin on points.

Egan was shown a second yellow card for pulling back Joelinton, which was due on goal

Enda Stevens missed his space and allowed Allan Saint-Maximin to open the scoring

And it was game over when another visit gaffe from keeper Dean Henderson - startlingly out of position - saw Matt Ritchie slam home Newcastle second.

The last half hour was a stroll for the hosts who took advantage of the blades “Generosity for everyone, but certainly their own top flight safety.

Wilder men knew that a long time ago, and that is why their sights were set on a first European qualification in the club's history. They could have finished fifth with a win, but now they are only two points better than ninth placed Crystal Palace.

There is a risk the momentum has been lost amid lockdown and savages, and players will have to work hard to discover their direction.

On the back of this horror show they look to the teams in behind instead of in front, and what a shame that would be were their time to slip away-middle table.

Forgetting to speak of the lawsuit, that would be an injustice

There is a risk Chris Wilder's side may have lost momentum during the coronavirus lockdown


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