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Wilder finally admits Sheffield United relegation is 'unlikely' after Bournemouth win

Sheffield United manager, Chris Wilder, admits relegation is “unlikely” following the 2-1 victory over Bournemouth.

The Blades came from behind to win at Bramall Lane – a result which moved them up to fifth in the Premier League table.

It has been a remarkable season so far for Wilder’s men. They currently have 39 points after 26 games in their first top flight campaign in 12 years.

While talk is now about whether United can qualify for Europe, rather than avoid the drop, the boss has refused to be drawn on such talk.

Survival was always the priority for the club after being promoted from the Championship. Yet there is now a 15-point gap between his side and the bottom three.

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And Wilder has finally admitted they’ll be in the division for at least another year – just.

“I’ll let the mathematicians and the statisticians work that one out,” the 52-year-old told BBC Radio Sheffield.

“I think we’ve got to go on an incredible, unbelievable run (to get relegated) and I think you see the way the team are playing, in and out of possession, I think it’s very unlikely that’s going to happen.

“But as I said, we want more. We’ve enjoyed the season.”

Why relegation is certainly “unlikely” for Sheffield United

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It is an unwritten rule that 40 points is the magic total to avoid being relegated from the Premier League. In truth, generally the number is lower than that.

On only four occasions since the league reduced to 20 teams for the 1995/96 season has 40 points been needed to survive. The last time that happened was in 2011, when Birmingham City went down with 39 points and Wolverhampton Wanderers finished just about them with 40.

The most a club has ever needed is 43, with West Ham United relegated in 2003 with 42 points.

Yet, on average, 36.6 points are required to stay up. With that three points against the Cherries, United have already exceeded that.

Instead they are looking to close the gap on the Champions League qualification places. Fourth-placed Chelsea are now only two points ahead of them.

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