Sheff Utd set to sack Paul Heckingbottom in first Premier League axing of season with replacement already lined up


CHRIS WILDER is set to replace Paul Heckingbottom at Sheffield United and make a dramatic return to Bramall Lane.

The Blades are rock-bottom of the Premier League after Saturday’s 5-0 hammering by relegation rivals Burnley.

Paul Heckingbottom is set to become the first Premier League manager to lose his job this seasonRex

GettyAnd Chris Wilder is expected to replace him[/caption]

Heckingbottom’s expected departure as boss today will be the first Prem managerial casualty of the season.

Ex-Sheffield United manager Wilder achieved great success in his first stint between 2016 and 2021 which included guiding the Yorkshire club to the top-flight in 2019.

SunSport understands he is ready to take over until the end of the season.

After Wilder left United by mutual consent in March 2021, the 56-year-old has had spells in the dugout at Middlesbrough and Watford where he left at the end of last season.

Fans called for Heckingbottom, 46, to be sacked following the heavy defeat at Turf Moor – with chants of “Hecky out” being clearly audible from the away support.

And Heckingbottom’s two-year reign as manager looks set to end with the club bottom of the league after five points from 14 matches.

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United have won just once – beating Wolves on November 4 – and lost 11 of those matches.

Heckingbottom defended his record following the game, clearly knowing his fate had virtually been sealed.


The club have been plagued by financial issues of late and had to let go of key players over the summer, despite being promoted to the Premier League.

They lost star man Iliman Ndiaye to Marseille and were faced with the cruel reality of former midfielder Sander Berge running the show for Burnley during Saturday’s 5-0 defeat.

Heckingbottom said: “I wanted to keep the group together but we couldn’t.

“We’ve been making financial decisions rather than football decisions. We’ve been cutting the wage bill, selling the best assets and they [Burnley] spent £200million.

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“We’ve compromised but that’s not an excuse. It’s about finding performances out of players.”

Sheffield United host high-flying Liverpool on Wednesday night.

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