Kevin McCabe last night admitted a Sheffield United legend rebuked him for not appointing Chris Wilder sooner.
But, after endorsing his decision to name the former Northampton Town chief as Nigel Adkins’ successor, McCabe revealed that Dave Bassett, who twice won promotion during a memorable seven year spell in South Yorkshire, believes the League One club has finally hired a manager capable of galvanising Bramall Lane.
McCabe, United’s co-owner, told The Star: “I spoke to Dave Bassett and he was delighted. He said to me: ‘I told you so about Chris some time ago so why didn’t you bloody listen?’ He said it with meaning. He thinks we’ve got someone who is not just right for us now but also for the long-term.”
Wilder, aged 48, played under Bassett when United reached the top-flight in 1990. McCabe swooped for his services when Adkins became the seventh manager to be sacked by Bramall Lane’s hierarchy since parting company with Neil Warnock nine seasons ago
“All our recent managers have been good choices and good men,” McCabe said. “There are expectations here and achieving those is hard. When people come here it’s their Wembley. That means we have to be even better. It’s not an excuse but we have to be up and at ‘em.”
“I understand that and Chris understands that,” McCabe added. “Maybe other managers have only realised that halfway through a season when it’s been too late. And let’s not forget (Wilder’s assistant) Alan Knill. He’s a very different personality to Chris but they are two characters who, together, make a good foundation to get the best out of the players we will bring in, who are already here and who are coming through the system.”