United's U23s slipped to disappointing defeat at Oakwell Academy on Friday afternoon.
Goals from Saidy Janko, Josh Kay and Jake Charles saw a more experienced Reds side run out comfortable winners.
Despite the scoreline though, United had chances to get back into the game and on another day could have taken something from the fixture.
Wright missed a penalty with the score at 2-0, whilst substitute Hall hit the woodwork and Tyler Smith was denied when through on goal.
Academy Manager Travis Binnion admitted the defeat must act as a learning curve for the youngsters.
He remarked: "We had our chances and plenty of possession, but we've been punished at the other end.
"There are positives to take despite the defeat, but it is never nice losing to your local rivals.
"These games and results in particular are a learning curve for our young group and although it might not seem it in the short-term we'll be better for it in the long-term.
"We had six scholars involved and we're stretched at the moment as we try and compete in three competitions in this age group, but we'll keep going."
Blades: Perryman, Bennett (Cantrill 64), Kelly, Gilmour, Cummings, Graham, T. Smith, Gordon, Wright (Greaves 76), Stewart (Hall 69), K. Smith.
Unused: Warhurst, Semple.