Sheffield United: David has done his homework

David Weir says United have  a proud history within the game � BLADES SPORTS PHOTOGRAPHY
David Weir says United have a proud history within the game � BLADES SPORTS PHOTOGRAPHY

His arrival promises fresh ideas, some different faces and a forward-thinking approach, writes James Shield.

Nevertheless David Weir, Sheffield United’s new manager, has revealed he completed a crash course in history after agreeing to take charge of the South Yorkshire club.

The former Scotland international made the admission after being officially unveiled as Danny Wilson’s successor on Tuesday.

Weir’s regime, despite looking stubbornly to the future, also plans to respect United’s past.

“I always think you’ve got a responsibility to know about a club when you work there,” he said. “Even more so, to be honest, when you are in my position now.

“People want to learn about you and you also want to learn about them.

“I was fortunate enough to get a feeling to this club and realise what makes it tick.

“That played a massive part in my decision to come here.”

Weir, of course, was referring to the brief spell he enjoyed training at Shirecliffe before electing to join Everton’s coaching staff 16 months ago.

The 43-year-old’s first meeting with the region’s media was inevitably peppered with questions about time at Goodison Park.

Although Weir was keen to steer conversation back towards United - “I’m completely focused on this job and doing well here” - he did acknowledge there were similarities between the two footballing institutions.

“Sheffield United and Everton and both working peoples’ clubs. Where those people demand hard work and respect people who deliver that.

“I’ve got the same values. I appreciate those values and know how important they are.

“So hopefully we’ll be a good match. A good fit.”

Weir, who has spent the past 48 hours introducing himself to folk working behind the scenes, will oversee his first game as United manager when they visit Greenock Morton on July 3.

Immediate priorities include recruiting an assistant and assessing the merits of the squad he inherits from Wilson before identifying potential targets in the transfer market.

The Star understands that, rather than running a bloated operation, Weir informed United’s hierarchy during interview that he prefers to make select appointments.

At his behest, the same principle is expected to govern activities at first team level next term.

“David insisted right from the off that, as far as he’s concerned, it’s much more healthy to keep an eye on the numbers,” a source said. “That there’s no point in running a huge squad because that can lead to complications.

“And that the same goes for support staff too. He wants everyone to contribute.”

Weir, who also represented Glasgow Rangers, Falkirk and Heart of Midlothian as a player, yesterday learned that officials at the Edinburgh club have placed its entire first team squad up for sale in a bid to stave-off the threat of a winding-up order.

*Twitter: JamesShield1