Sheffield United's relegation from the Premier League, inevitable for some time, is now official after a 1-0 defeat away to Wolverhampton Wanderers.
With Sheffield United needing a win to survive Willian Jose's first goal for Wolverhampton Wanderers was enough to confine Paul Heckingbottom's side to a 1-0 defeat that was all too familiar for their fans this season, which for some time has taken on the tone of a trudge to the Championship. Good chances went unfinished by Blades' strikers whilst at the other end their lax defending was ruthlessly punished by Adama Traore and Wolves' January signing from Real Sociedad.
The Blades have occupied bottom spot in the Premier League since November and went 18 league games without a win to start the season before beating Newcastle United 1-0 at Bramall Lane, one of just four victories they have earned to go with two draws prior to today's game in the 2020-21 campaign. They have just 14 points, 19 from safety with only six games left to play.a
Sheffield United have already accrued enough points to avoid setting a new record for the lowest tally in a Premier League season -- 11 by Derby County in 2007-08 -- but if they accrue no more they would take the 'silver medal' for worst campaign from the Sunderland team of 2005-06.
Injuries to key players, in particular Jack O'Connell who was vital in the overlapping centre-backs system that brought such success to Sheffield United, have made for a more challenging second season in the Premier League than the first. Last year Chris Wilder's side won many admirers for their unique approach that took them to ninth in the table after a campaign in which they spent many weeks battling for European places and upsetting the game's established powers.
Since Wilder's departure in March Sheffield United have been without a permanent manager; Paul Heckingbottom is expected to lead them for the remainder of the season on an interim basis. Slavisa Jokanovic, who got Fulham promoted in 2017-18, and KV Oostende's Alexander Blessin are among the favorites to take the job. The club are also without a chairman after Prince Musaad Bin Khalid Al Saud resigned on Friday for personal reasons.
Their Premier League berth will be occupied by Norwich City, who confirmed their promotion from the Championship earlier on Saturday after Brentford and Swansea City failed to win.