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Sheffield United vs Brentford. Premier League.

Bramall LaneAttendance28,509.

Sheffield United 1

  • J Mcatee (46th minute)

Brentford 0

    Sheffield United 1-0 Brentford: James McAtee's stunning winner gives Chris Wilder first victory back at Blades

    Report and free match highlights as Chris Wilder wins his first game back at Sheffield United with a 1-0 home victory over Brentford; James McAtee scored first-half stunner to hand Blades just their second win of the season; Brentford's Frank Onyeka lucky to escape red card after VAR check

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    FREE TO WATCH: Highlights from the Premier League match between Sheffield United and Brentford

    Chris Wilder earned his first win since returning as Sheffield United manager after James McAtee’s stunning strike gave the Premier League’s bottom side a 1-0 home win over Brentford.

    Wilder returned to Bramall Lane on Tuesday to replace the sacked Paul Heckingbottom and, after suffering defeat in his first game in charge against Liverpool, bounced back to guide the Blades to just their second win of the season.

    "It was really emotional because that first win is huge for everybody," Wilder said in his post-match press conference.

    Player ratings

    Sheff Utd: Foderingham (7); Bogle (7), Ahmedhodzic (7), Robinson (7), Trusty (7); Souza (7), Hamer (7); McAtee (8), Brooks (7), Archer (7); Osula (6).

    Subs: Slimane (6), Lowe (6), Peck (n/a).

    Brentford: Flekken (6); Ghoddos (6), Pinnock (6), Mee (6), Janelt (6); Norgaard (6), Onyeka (5), Baptiste (6); Lewis-Potter (5), Maupay (6), Wissa (6).

    Subs: Yarmolyuk (6), Damsgaard (6), Olakigbe (6).

    Player of the Match: James McAtee.

    "I'd have been desperately disappointed (if Sheffield United conceded) for the amount of effort they've put in."

    McAtee curled in a superb first-half stoppage-time shot (45+1) in what proved to be the game's only real moment of quality as Brentford struggled to create much without the injured Bryan Mbeumo.

    The visitors were fortunate not to go down to 10 players before McAtee's goal after Frank Onyeka survived a red card VAR check in the 30th minute having been shown a yellow card for a stamp in a tackle on Vinicius Souza.

    Ex-Premier League referee Mike Dean believed Onyeka should have been sent off after VAR decided not to send referee Stuart Attwell to the monitor.

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    Sheffield United, however, overcame the controversial decision to beat the Bees by recording their first clean sheet of the season and move two points adrift of safety while Thomas Frank's side remain 11th.

    How Wilder reignited Blades' survival bid

    After a quiet opening start, the game had its first flashpoint on the half-hour mark as Onyeka flew into a challenge with Souza which was only deemed a yellow card by Attwell.

    VAR Robert Jones checked the tackle - which both Mike Dean and Sue Smith in the Soccer Saturday studio thought would be upgraded to a red card - but he opted not to send Attwell to the monitor.

    Onyeka then almost compounded the poor decision by having the first shot on target in the 36th minute but it was straight at Blades goalkeeper Wes Foderingham.

    Team news

    • New Sheffield United boss Chris Wilder named an unchanged starting XI after suffering defeat in his first game back in charge against Liverpool at home in midweek.
    • Brentford boss Thomas Frank made three changes from Wednesday’s defeat at Brighton.
    • With key man Bryan Mbeumo injured, Frank brought Yoane Wissa and Keane Lewis-Potter into the attack with captain Christian Norgaard returning from suspension as Mads Roerslev and Yegor Yarmolyuk were benched.

    United's first shot on target, though, was more spectacular and successful as McAtee beautifully curled into the top corner as Mark Flekken watched on helplessly in the first minute of first-half stoppage time.

    The Manchester City loanee's first Premier League goal sparked huge celebrations from Wilder on the touchline.

    After surviving the red card check, Onyeka was unsurprisingly taken off at half-time and replaced by Yegor Yarmolyuk.

    But the change did not have the desired impact as the Blades came close to a second after substitute Anis Ben Slimane was denied at close range by Flekken.

    Yoane Wissa had a couple of shots on target but the Bees could not muster a meaningful opportunity as the home side look likeliest to score again.

    Archer forced Flekken into a save and then bent one wide, while Slimane lashed into the side netting.

    Despite some late Brentford pressure, the Blades held on to the delight of Wilder and to breathe new life into their survival bid.

    Wilder: Club's suffered this season but our job to change that

    Sheffield United boss Chris Wilder said:

    "It was really emotional because that first win is huge for everybody. I'd have been desperately disappointed (if Sheffield United conceded) for the amount of effort they've put in.

    "The word we use is suffer and the club has had to suffer this season, nationally we know what the narrative is, we are not daft, we listen to pundits and commentators about certain aspects. It's our job to change that."

    He added: "The only disappointing thing is we didn't put the game to bed and we've all been in that position.

    "We took a step into them and then we had to suffer at the end of the second half to put our bodies on the line and keep the ball out of the net and that's the most simplistic way of doing it.

    "It's a quick turnaround especially with the amount of energy we put into the game and the emotional energy with what's happened this week with the manager leaving and what that does to players and staff."

    Thomas: Mbeumo was a big miss

    Brentford boss Thomas Frank said:

    "Of course he [Mbeumo] was a big miss.

    "Take any of the top producers out of any of the top sides and they will also feel it but it is what it is and it is up to me to find solutions for it.

    "We are trying and sometimes it doesn't succeed the first time, hopefully we get another chance on Sunday (against Aston Villa)."

    Opta stats: Sheff Utd make it three straight wins over Brentford

    • Sheffield United have won three consecutive league games against Brentford for the first time, while this is their first top-flight victory against the Bees since Christmas Day 1946 (6-1).
    • James McAtee scored his first Premier League goal, and his 10th overall for Sheffield United (55th appearance). Indeed the Manchester City loanee has been directly involved in 12 goals in all competitions in 2023 (seven goals, five assists), more than any other Blades player.
    • Sheffield United gained just their second league win of the season (D2 L12), their first victory in the Premier League without conceding since their final game of 2020-21 (1-0 against Burnley).
    • Brentford have lost four of their last five Premier League games (W1), one more defeat than in their previous 14 in the competition combined (W7 D4 L3).
    • Cameron Archer created four of Sheffield United's nine attempts at goal in this match. The last Blades player to create more in a single Premier League game was Oliver Norwood against Crystal Palace in August 2019 (5).

    What's next?

    Sheffield United visit Stamford Bridge to face Chelsea on Saturday December 16. Kick-off 3pm. The Blades then travel to Aston Villa for Friday Night Football on December 22, live on Sky Sports. Kick-off 8pm.

    Brentford host Aston Villa in their next Premier League fixture on Sunday December 17. Kick-off 2pm.

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