Billy Sharp was the hat-trick hero as United deservedly beat Wigan Athletic to return to the top of the Sky Bet Championship.
Chey Dunkley's own-goal got the ball rolling at the Lane, before Sharp stole centre stage with his treble. For the Latics, Kai Naismith briefly restored parity in the first-half and substitute Joe Garner netted a consolation.
Boss Wilder made two enforced changes for the clash against Wigan. Egan (hamstring) and Duffy (hip) missed out, with Stearman and Sharp returning, the latter as skipper.
It was the first who had the first sight of goal, Windass won a corner, from which Powell headed goalwards, but it was a comfortable save for Henderson. United were enjoying plenty of possession round the Wigan box, but Walton was on hand to claim a couple of crosses.
On 18 minutes, McGoldrick was booked following an incident involving Powell, then the visitors had penalty appeals decline as Powell went down, with James firing over on the angle as play was allowed to carry on. Windass then won a free-kick in a dangerous area, but Henderson tipped over an effort from Roberts. From the resulting corner, Roberts delivered to the near post where Dunkley headed over.
But five minutes later it was the Blades who took the lead. Freeman's throw caught Wigan ball watching and from Basham's poke across goal it was DUNKLEY who diverted the ball into his own net. Wigan looked for a response and it was the ever-dangerous Powell who had Henderson worried, but his shot from distance was always edging wide.
Wigan did restore parity in the 39th minute though, Powell freed Byrne down the right and from his cross NAISMITH controlled before slotting the ball past the advancing Henderson. But in the final minute of the first-half, the Blades regained the lead. Norwood's deep free-kick was headed across by Stearman and skipper SHARP was jogging on the spot to fire home past Walton.
There was still time for United to come close a third though, the Blades broke quickly and Sharp played in McGoldrick, but Robinson raced back to bloke the attempted lob at the expense of a corner.
United began the second-half in a positive manner, with Clarke forcing Walton into a save at his near post, from Freeman's cross. At the other end, Powell should have equalised, but he headed into the Kop from Robinson's ball back into the box.
And that miss proved costly as SHARP tucked home his second of the afternoon, after an excellent early ball across the face of goal by Clarke, who had been freed Norwood.
Just after the hour, Coutts was introduced, replacing McGoldrick and moments later United added a fourth. Norwood's ball caused James a problem, Stevens flicked on for SHARP, who dinked an effort over Walton to secure the matchball. But Wigan rallied and reduced the deficit, when GARNER hooked the ball past Henderson from a right-wing cross by Windass.
O'Connell needed treatment and a replacement shirt following a clash with Dunkley, but it didn't stop the defender who was inches away from adding a fifth as he rose highest to head Norwood's against the crossbar. Basham was booked for a foul on McManaman, but Henderson was equal to James's free-kick from the edge of the box.
With two minutes remaining, Sharp received a standing ovation from all four sides of the Lane as Washington was introduced. Fleck was booked for kicking the ball away as five minutes of added time were signalled and Garner followed into the referee's book for a lunge on O'Connell. The last action saw Henderson save twice in a matter of minutes from Naismith and then Garner.
Blades: Henderson, Stevens, Fleck, O'Connell, Basham, Clarke, Sharp (Washington 88), Norwood, McGoldrick (Coutts 61), Freeman, Stearman.
Unused: Baldock, Woodburn, Johnson, Moore, Cranie.
Wigan: Walton, Byrne, Robinson, Morsy, Windass, James, Roberts (Naismith 36) Dunkley, Powell (McManaman 67), Connolly (Garner 58), Burn.
Unused: Vaughan, Lopes, Kipre, Jones.