Adrian Durham has declared Sheffield United are getting relegated this season on his Talksport Drive show.
It is an opinion that is unlikely to please many Blades fans, as they get ready to watch their team in the Premier League for the first time in 12 years.
“Sheffield United are going down,” Durham said. “They’re not even taking the Premier League seriously.
“They’re still bigging up Billy Sharp, and as much as I love Billy Sharp; great record, absolute legend, local boy came good, third spell at the club, but he is League One.
“When you’ve got a team that’s not being competitive, all they’re doing is signing Championship players and saying; ‘Isn’t this great, Billy Sharp is in the Premier League.’
“That’s not taking the Premier League seriously, they’re underestimating the jump from Championship to Premier League and I feel a bit uncomfortable about it.”
Why Adrian Durham is wrong about Sheffield United
Durham claims that the Blades are not taking the top flight seriously. His reasoning for this appears to be that they are “signing Championship players.”
It is true that manager Chris Wilder has concentrated on those currently plying their trade in the second tier of English football. Luke Freeman, Callum Robinson and Ben Osborn have all joined from current Championship clubs. Oli McBurnie is likely to be next.
Yet what Wilder is doing is sensible. United do not have the financial resources of others in the Premier League. They have to be a little more canny about how they conduct their business.
Wilder has targeted those who have stood out in Championship and whom he believes can make the step up. They are also young and therefore represent great potential for increased value. This isn’t being flippant, this is working within your means.
Also, claiming Billy Sharp is “League One” when the striker scored 23 Championship goals last term seems a little bizarre. It could legitimately be argued that Sharp isn’t going to make it in the top tier, but the stats prove he is better than League One.
Durham is known for making strong claims that rile supporters. Whether he even believes what he has said about the Blades is debatable. However, with just the slightest scrutiny it does seem to come from a place of ignorance.
All Wilder and his side can do now is prove him wrong.