MX23RW : Wednesday, January 16 02:19:30

Result: Sheffield United climb above Derby with impressive home win

Result: Sheffield United climb above Derby with impressive home win
© Reuters
The Blades are up to fourth.

Sheffield United returned to winning ways and climbed above visitors Derby in the Sky Bet Championship with a 3-1 victory at Bramall Lane.

Goals from Billy Sharp, David McGoldrick and Leon Clarke secured a home win for the Blades despite a trademark Harry Wilson free-kick levelling the scores early in the first half.

The result left the Blades in fourth place in the table, two points ahead of their opponents who dropped to sixth.

Chris Wilder named an unchanged Blades side for the third successive match and it was top-scorer Sharp who had the best chance for the home side early on.

McGoldrick curled wide in the opening minute before Sharp forced a fine save from Scott Carson – the goalkeeper rushed out quickly as the striker flicked Enda Stevens' header goalwards.

Down the other end Tom Huddlestone's 30-yard through ball was met by Wilson and he shot under Dean Henderson with his weaker right foot, only to see George Baldock clear off the line.

In a half with few clear chances and a number of mistakes, it took a pinpoint header from Sharp to break the deadlock and give the Blades the lead four minutes before the break.

Jack O'Connell again found space down the left and delivered a cross into the middle which Sharp headed into the far corner past the outstretched Carson.

The second half started brighter, but McGoldrick failed to capitalise on Fikayo Tomori's fluffed header to his goalkeeper and the Rams were able to clear.

And the visitors went down the other end and levelled in the 53rd minute thanks to a Wilson free-kick from the edge of the box. His curled effort left Henderson rooted and clipped in off the underside of the bar to draw his side level against the run of play.

Tackles began to fly in as tempers flared on both sides, leading to an end-to-end exchange between two of the league's promotion hopefuls.

Oliver Norwood blazed over from 18 yards after rushing to meet a lay off from Mark Duffy, before Wilson saw a second free-kick whistle narrowly wide from distance.

The Blades were back in front in the 64th minute when John Fleck's diving header sent McGoldrick through and the striker showed composure to lob Carson.

Sharp could have sealed it with little over 10 minutes to play, but his unmarked header inside the area went just wide of Carson's right post.

Derby continued to press for an equaliser, but the Blades secured the three points through substitute Leon Clarke  as his free header was deflected past Carson by Jayden Bogle with six minutes left.

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Sheffield United manager Chris Wilder pictured in November 2018
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Tables
TeamPWDLFAGDPTS
1Leeds UnitedLeeds27166546281854
2Sheffield UnitedSheff Utd27155746281850
3Norwich CityNorwich27148549351450
4West Bromwich AlbionWest Brom27138655352047
5Middlesbrough271210530191146
6Derby CountyDerby2712783834443
7Bristol City2711883429541
8Birmingham CityBirmingham2791263930939
9Nottingham ForestNott'm Forest2791263931839
10Hull City27116103933639
11Queens Park RangersQPR27116103335-239
12Aston Villa2791174943638
13Swansea CitySwansea27107103632437
14Blackburn RoversBlackburn2791083541-637
15Stoke CityStoke2781183134-335
16Sheffield WednesdaySheff Weds2788113245-1332
17Brentford27710103937231
18Preston North EndPreston2779113944-530
19Wigan AthleticWigan2785142840-1229
20Millwall2777133343-1028
21Rotherham UnitedRotherham27510122542-1725
22Reading2758143041-1123
23Bolton WanderersBolton2757151840-2222
24Ipswich TownIpswich2739152246-2418

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