Burnley 1 Sheff Utd 0: Blades become first ever Prem side not to win before New Year's Day as Mee thumps Clarets winner

CHRIS WILDER watched his blunted Blades head for the record that had been rusting in history.

For not since 1902 had a side failed to win a single top flight game in a season before New Year’s day.

But in their last clash of 2020 the vision was only of a nightmare repeat of the failure of Bolton 118 years ago.

Ben Mee’s header put the Clarets ahead in the 31st minute and from that point on Sheffield United were fighting desperately to add a third point to their measly total.

Things are only going from bad to worse or the manager who took the Blades from League One to the Prem in three glorious seasons.

For the club is also in the grip of a Covid crisis.

It is understood veterans Billy Steele and Phil Jagielka tested positive for the virus before the game.

There are 18 from the club – employees as well as players and backroom staff, who have been forced into isolation.

Yet Wilder insisted before kick-off that there had been no thoughts of trying to have the game postponed.

He said: “ We have a couple of players missing through illness.

“We had a player who had to go and get tested this morning, a quick test.

“So it’s not ideal.

“But we want to pay football and we were not looking to get anything canned or whatever.”

Wilder describes his players as street fighters.

And last season they truly punched well above their weight.

But while Rhian Brwster and David McGodrick did force England goalkeeper Nick Pope into saves, the Sheffield side barely laid a glove on Burnley.

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