Heckingbottom & Tindall to steer Sheffield United to end of season
Written by Training Ground Guru — March 15, 2021
SHEFFIELD UNITED have appointed an interim coaching team led by Paul Heckingbottom and Jason Tindall that will take them through to the end of the season following the exit of Chris Wilder at the weekend.
Heckingbottom has been parachuted in from the Under-23s, where he has worked since July, and took charge of the 5-0 defeat by Leicester City on Sunday.
Tindall, who was sacked by Bournemouth last month after six months as manager, has come in to assist. He is a childhood friend of United chief executive Steve Bettis and had a watching brief of Sunday before joining up with the squad full time a day later.
"The appointment of Paul and the integration from development to senior level is testimony to the great work that is currently being done at the Academy," Bettis said.
“The club sees the following months as an opportunity to further develop some of our talents at the Academy and to give them valuable time to train with the first team.
"Additionally, Jason has a fantastic pedigree and his fresh input will hopefully add a different dimension when he joins the club on Monday. He will have a watching brief at Sunday's game at Leicester."
Wilder left the club by mutual consent on Saturday after a four-and-a-half year stint that saw them achieve two promotions and finish ninth in the Premier League last season.
However, this campaign has been a major disappointment and the Blades are 14 points adrift of safety with only nine games of the season remaining.
Wilder’s long-time assistant, Alan Knill has stayed on at the club, but is likely to leave at the end of the season, when either his former boss gets a new job or a permanent manager comes in at Sheffield United with his own staff.
Wilder and Knill secured significant new contracts in January 2020 that run up to 2024 and United were reluctant to pay both of them off now. They did agree a severance deal with Wilder which leaves him free to join another club and frees United of the obligation to pay off the entirety of his contract.
First-team coach and Head of Sport Science Matty Prestridge is another long-time colleague of Wilder's, having worked with him at Northampton and Sheffield United, and could also move at the end of the campaign. Goalkeeper coach Darren Ward has also stayed on at Bramall Lane.