Chris Wilder: 'VAR is doing a disservice to the officials in this country'

Sheffield United marched back into the top eight with a 2-1 win at Norwich City but it was another contest overshadowed by VAR controversy.

The Blades saw a Chris Basham red card overturned but also had a goal chalked off and manager Chris Wilder has continued his onslaught after further issues with the system during the week.

"I'm not sure their voices are behind heard"

Wilder explained, "28,000 were signing the same thing [anti-VAR chants].

I've tried to think about it but the whole atmosphere around football stadiums has changed. I feel for the fans as they are the stakeholders, buying the packages, buying the shirts and travelling to away games but they're not having it. I'm not sure their voices are being heard."

Wilder believes that VAR is partially undoing the hard work of players and managers at top-flight clubs.

"Players and managers have to work hard to get to where they are and referees and officials have got to improve too. The percentage that are improving is not balanced and that is because VAR is doing a disservice to the elite officials in this country.

I'm a traditionalist - people making challenges, playing proper football, being competitive, different styles but the game has lost a little bit."

The Sheffield United boss also suggested that Kenny McLean conned the referee as he went to the ground following Basham's challenge.

"I can't say if he caught him or not and I had the best view in the house but the reaction of the player made it difficult for the referee.

It's something that I've said in meetings and we have to be careful of for younger players and kids. It's not making it a better game to be involved in."


'Just as tough as Chelsea and Spurs'

Wilder has extended his unbeaten run with Sheffield United against Norwich to four games, whilst they remain without a defeat on the road this season.

"We are unbeaten away from home, up to eighth, but this has been one of the toughest games we have had.

I thought it was a real dangerous game for us because of the recent history between the two sides. I think it went under the radar how well both our teams did last season." 

Asked if he read the riot act at half-time following a poor opening 45 minutes, Wilder responded with "yes, you could say that.

They were better than us in the first half, we went backwards and square and let them come onto us. We didn't do the fundamentals but we were more Sheffield United in the second half. I'm a bit disappointed we didn't take the game away from them.

But this was just as tough as Chelsea and Spurs. Maybe the boys thought it was going to be easier than I was talking about."