It was only a year ago that Sheffield United manager Chris Wilder almost left the club.

Wilder and his players have been celebrating getting promoted to the Premier League for the first time in 12 years.

The Blades brought their season to a close on Sunday with a 2-2 draw at Stoke City. However, the celebrations had already started with their place in England’s top tier being confirmed the previous week.

There is euphoria among fans of the club, so it is important to remember that it could have all been so different.

At the end of last term – United’s first in the Championship in seven years – there was disarray at board level. Co-owners Prince Abdullah and Kevin McCabe fell out and Wilder wasn’t sure he could work in such an environment.

The pair are still in a dispute that will go to the High Court this month to be resolved.

“Great credit to the owners for putting their differences aside and thinking first and foremost about the club,” Wilder told the Sheffield Star.

“This time last season, when I walked off the pitch at Bristol City, I was in tears because I thought that was me done here. Obviously there were things that weren’t right.”

(Photo by Chris Brunskill/Getty Images)

What changed?

Clearly the co-owners at Bramall Lane convinced Wilder their issues wouldn’t affect the club. They were true to their word, granting the Blades boss the funds to secure the likes of record signing John Egan and Oliver Norwood.

Wilder has had to work with a more limited budget than others in the division. Free transfer David McGoldrick and Manchester United loanee Dean Henderson have been hugely influential, for instance.

Yet the money was there to improve the squad. By October the court case will also have been resolved, with either Prince Abdullah or McCabe confirmed as owner.

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