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Report: Sheffield United to sack Heckingbottom, expected to rehire Wilder

Martin Rickett - PA Images / PA Images / Getty

Sheffield United will make Paul Heckingbottom the first managerial sacking of the 2023-24 Premier League campaign and are expected to bring back Chris Wilder as his replacement, according to The Guardian's Ben Fisher.

The Blades suffered another lopsided defeat in Saturday's 5-0 reverse at fellow strugglers Burnley. They've also lost 8-0 at home to Newcastle United and suffered a 5-0 loss at Arsenal. They're positioned bottom of the table and have conceded a league-high 39 goals over 14 games.

Heckingbottom took aim at the club after the harrowing defeat at Turf Moor, claiming it made "financial decisions rather than football decisions" during the summer transfer window. Iliman Ndiaye and Sander Berge, two standout players as Sheffield United were promoted from the Championship last season, were among those sold before the campaign kicked off.

Berge moved to Burnley and played the full 90 minutes as Vincent Kompany's team romped to victory over Sheffield United.

Wilder, a lifelong fan of Sheffield United, led the South Yorkshire outfit to promotion to the Championship in 2017 and to the Premier League in 2019. His imaginative tactics earned greater recognition in the top flight - especially his deployment of inverted wing-backs - but he left the club by mutual consent in March 2021 after a string of poor performances. After two seasons in the Premier League, Sheffield United were relegated back to the Championship soon after Wilder's departure.

He's since endured difficult stints in charge of Middlesbrough and Watford in the second tier.

Sheffield United round out 2023 with matches against Liverpool, Brentford, Chelsea, Aston Villa, Luton Town, and Manchester City.

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