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Wilder's Northampton verdict

1 January 2017

Speaking with the Blades at the summit of Sky Bet EFL League One, Chris Wilder described Saturday's last-gasp win over Northampton as 'a brilliant way to sign off 2016'.

The New Year's Eve clash in front of another bumper Bramall Lane crowd appeared to be heading for a stalemate until Kieron Freeman reacted quickest in the penalty area to fire home after a right-wing cross from Paul Coutts wasn't cleared by the Cobblers defence.

And a delighted Wilder remarked: "It is a great result against stubborn and determined opposition who got deeper and deeper as the game progressed.

"Credit to Northampton and Rob Page, they pushed us all the way and we needed Simon (Moore) to make a fantastic save at 0-0.

"I totally respect the way Northampton came and fought as they did for what would have been a fantastic point for them, but we said we'd take it whatever time we scored and thankfully the ball has dropped nicely for Kieron (Freeman)."

With the game goalless, Wilder made three positive substitutions in a bid for that elusive goal and the Blades boss is adamant that positive approach will continue into 2017.

The Gaffer: "We went for three points and it came off, we will always go for broke, that's just how we are, sometimes we might get caught on the counter, but at the moment things are going for us.

"I have full admiration and real pride in my players for not accepting that it wasn't our day and making it our day.

"It's a good feeling, we've reached our target of 50 points from 24 games and now the race begins, we're bang in the middle of it.

"We found a way of winning again and that's immensely pleasing, it's a good habit to have and a brilliant way to sign off 2016."

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