Nigel Adkins offered no excuses following Tuesday's loss to league leaders Burton Albion at Bramall Lane.
Lucas Akins scored the game's decisive goal early in the second-half, but it was United's overall showing that frustrated the Blades boss the most.
He remarked: "It was a bad night, a bad performance and another disappointing result. Our aim was to be positive and get on the front foot but it didn't happen.
"We changed things round a couple of times to try and get into the game, but we conceded a poor, poor goal.
"This is a fantastic Club and the players need to know they have a big responsibility playing for Sheffield United, they need to be capable of playing exciting, winning football.
"It is becoming more evident that the players aren't handling the expectation that is placed on them and anyone with an ego needs to place it to one side and work their socks off for this terrific Club."
Adkins continued: "We want to make a pathway for the youngsters to progress but we are also about the here and now, we need to be winning football matches and that performance wasn't good enough.
"We didn't do the basics well enough, that is annoying to be brutally honest. We didn't win our one-on-one duels across the pitch and that hurts."