Christopher John Wilder (born 23 September 1967) is an English professional football manager and former player who played as a right back. He is the manager of Premier League club Sheffield United.

Chris Wilder
Chris Wilder
Wilder with Bury in 2008
Personal information
Full name Christopher John Wilder[1]
Date of birth (1967-09-23) 23 September 1967 (age 52)[1]
Place of birth Stocksbridge, England
Playing position Right back[1]
Club information
Current team
Sheffield United (manager)
Youth career
1982–1986 Southampton
Senior career*
Years Team Apps (Gls)
1986–1992 Sheffield United 93 (1)
1989Walsall (loan) 4 (0)
1990Charlton Athletic (loan) 1 (0)
1991Charlton Athletic (loan) 2 (0)
1992Leyton Orient (loan) 16 (1)
1992–1996 Rotherham United 132 (11)
1996–1997 Notts County 46 (0)
1997–1998 Bradford City 42 (0)
1998–1999 Sheffield United 12 (0)
1998Northampton Town (loan) 1 (0)
1999Lincoln City (loan) 3 (0)
1999 Brighton & Hove Albion 11 (0)
1999–2001 Halifax Town 51 (1)
Total 414 (14)
Teams managed
2001–2002 Alfreton Town
2002–2008 Halifax Town
2008–2014 Oxford United
2014–2016 Northampton Town
2016– Sheffield United
* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only

His extensive professional playing career saw spells at Sheffield United (twice), Rotherham United, Notts County, Bradford City, Brighton & Hove Albion and Halifax Town. He also had loan spells at five clubs.

After retiring, he became a manager and was in charge of Alfreton Town, Halifax Town (their last manager before liquidation), Oxford United and Northampton Town before his appointment at Sheffield United. He won promotion from the Conference Premier with Oxford via the play-offs in 2010, from League Two as champions with Northampton in 2016, from League One with Sheffield United as champions in 2017, and from the Championship with the same club two years later.

Playing careerEdit

Wilder was born in Stocksbridge, West Riding of Yorkshire.[1] He started his career as a trainee at Southampton and was released without making it into the first team.[2] He moved on to Sheffield United in August 1986 and during his career he played for 11 clubs, including a long spell at Rotherham United before joining Halifax Town in 1999.

Managerial careerEdit

Alfreton TownEdit

Wilder began his career in management at Alfreton Town. He took over at the club in late October 2001 and in the 27 weeks he was in charge won four trophies: the Northern Counties (East) League Premier Division, the League Cup, the President's Cup and the Derbyshire Senior Cup.

Halifax TownEdit

Wilder returned to Halifax Town as manager on 2 July 2002.[3][4] He replaced caretaker manager Neil Redfearn, who had in turn replaced Alan Little (who left on 8 April after falling ill with appendicitis in March). Halifax had been relegated to the Conference at the end of the season.

Wilder was in charge at Halifax for more than 300 games until the club went into liquidation on 30 June 2008, and he decided to join former Halifax defender Alan Knill, as the assistant manager of Bury.[5]

Oxford UnitedEdit

After fewer than six months at Gigg Lane, Wilder was appointed as the manager of Conference National club Oxford United on 21 December 2008,[6] where he only just missed out on a play-off place in his first season. Wilder's first full season in charge of Oxford began successfully and by mid-season they were top of the Conference table by five points with a game in hand. However, Oxford were overtaken by Stevenage, who would go on to win the title and take the automatic promotion place, consigning the Us to the playoffs with Luton Town, Rushden & Diamonds and York City. They defeated Rushden & Diamonds to reach the play-off final, and gained promotion to the Football League by beating York City 3–1.[7]

In their first season back in the Football League in four years, Wilder guided Oxford to mid-table safety. The team finished 12th, in the top half of the table, their highest finish in seven years.[8] The next season Oxford finished ninth, after poor form late in the season led to the team dropping out of the play-off position they had occupied for most of the year.[9] Oxford's chairman Kelvin Thomas gave Wilder his backing, meaning he would remain manager for the 2012–13 season.[10] Despite failing to achieve a play-off place again in Oxford's third season back in the League, and intense speculation about his future at the club, Wilder was offered and accepted a further one-year contract for the 2013–14 season.[11]

On 26 January 2014 he resigned as Oxford manager with the intention of joining League Two rivals Northampton Town as their manager.[12]

Northampton TownEdit

On 27 January 2014, Wilder was appointed manager of Northampton Town, signing a three-and-a-half year contract. Wilder successfully battled against relegation to the Conference, after taking over the club in the relegation zone in League 2.[13] He led the side to a mid-table finish in the 2014–15 season, and then to the League Two title the following season with 99 points[14], despite significant financial difficulties at the club resulting in players and staff not being paid during October and November 2015.[15]

Sheffield UnitedEdit

On 12 May 2016, Wilder joined his boyhood club Sheffield United as their new manager on a three-year contract, following the parting of company with Nigel Adkins.[16][17] In pre-season he was able to bring some new players in, with little financial backing, a lot of his acquisitions were free transfers. He then made Sheffield born Billy Sharp club captain. Sharp, like Wilder, is a life long Blades fan. Wilder's managerial League One debut didn't get off to a good start. Having only gained a single point from the first 4 games left United at the bottom of League One.[18] After the poor start however the club pushed on and went on to become League One Champions securing 100 points in the process, a club record.[19]

His second season was full of highs and few lows. His managerial Championship debut against Brentford ended in a 1–0 win for Sheffield United.[20] Then in September 2017, United beat city rivals Sheffield Wednesday 4–2 at Hillsborough,[21] a record for goals scored by United against Wednesday at Hillsborough. By the end of October, after beating local rivals Leeds United 2–1 at Elland Road, Sheffield United were top of the Championship.[22]

On 28 April 2019, it was confirmed that Wilder had led the Blades to the Premier League following nearest rival Leeds' 1–1 draw at home.[23] This ensured his second promotion in just three years at the club. This achievement earned him the LMA Manager of the Year award.[24]

In July 2019, Wilder signed a new three-year contract with the club.[25] On 10 January 2020, Wilder signed a four-year contract extension with the club.[26]

Managerial statisticsEdit

As of match played 9 February 2020[27]
Managerial record by team and tenure
Team From To Record
P W D L Win %
Halifax Town 2 July 2002 30 June 2008 312 120 77 115 038.5
Oxford United 21 December 2008 26 January 2014 269 121 70 78 045.0
Northampton Town 27 January 2014 12 May 2016 126 61 28 37 048.4
Sheffield United 12 May 2016 Present 181 94 41 46 051.9
Total 888 396 216 276 044.6



Alfreton Town[28]

Oxford United

Northampton Town

Sheffield United



  1. ^ a b c d "Chris Wilder". Barry Hugman's Footballers. Retrieved 3 June 2019.
  2. ^ Holley, Duncan; Chalk, Gary (2003). In That Number – A post-war chronicle of Southampton FC. Hagiology Publishing. p. 615. ISBN 978-0-9534474-3-5.
  3. ^ "Wilder quits for Halifax". Derbyshire Times. 4 July 2002. Retrieved 22 January 2016.
  4. ^ "Alfreton Town Football Club History". Alfreton Town F.C. Archived from the original on 11 June 2010. Retrieved 9 June 2010.
  5. ^ "Wilder leaves Halifax for Shakers". BBC Sport. 30 June 2008. Retrieved 1 July 2008.
  6. ^ "Wilder is new Oxford United boss". BBC Sport. 21 December 2008. Retrieved 21 December 2008.
  7. ^ "Oxford United 3–1 York City". BBC Sport. 16 May 2010. Retrieved 17 May 2010.
  8. ^ "Shrewsbury 3–0 Oxford Utd". BBC Sport. 8 May 2011. Retrieved 8 May 2011.
  9. ^ "Port Vale 3–0 Oxford Utd". BBC Sport. 5 May 2012. Retrieved 13 May 2011.
  10. ^ "Thomas pinning faith in Oxford United boss Wilder". Oxford Mail. 12 May 2012. Retrieved 4 October 2018.
  11. ^ "Chris Wilder signs new Oxford United deal". BBC Sport. 25 April 2013. Retrieved 25 April 2013.
  12. ^ "Oxford United accept manager Chris Wilder's resignation". BBC Sport. 26 January 2014. Retrieved 22 January 2016.
  13. ^ "Chris Wilder appointed new manager". Northampton Town F.C. Retrieved 27 January 2014.
  14. ^ "Northampton Town FC History". Northampton Town F.C. Retrieved 15 January 2017.
  15. ^ "Northampton Town players and staff paid after Thomas takeover". BBC Sport. 3 December 2015. Retrieved 12 January 2020.
  16. ^ "Blades appoint Wilder as new manager". Sheffield United F.C. 12 May 2016. Retrieved 13 May 2016.
  17. ^ "Chris Wilder: Sheffield United appoint Northampton boss to replace Nigel Adkins". BBC Sport. 12 May 2016. Retrieved 15 May 2016.
  18. ^ "Millwall 2 v Sheffield Utd. 1 : Match Report". Retrieved 26 April 2019.
  19. ^ Kirkham, Andrew (30 April 2017). "Up the Champions". The Official Matchday Programme of Sheffield United F.C. Souvenir Special. v Chesterfield.
  20. ^ "Sheffield Utd. 1 v Brentford 0 : Match Report". Retrieved 26 April 2019.
  21. ^ "Sheffield Wednesday 2 v. Sheffield Utd. 4 : Match Report". Retrieved 26 April 2019.
  22. ^ "Leeds Utd. 1 v Sheffield Utd. 2 : Match Report". Retrieved 26 April 2019.
  23. ^ "Sheffield United promoted to the Premier League". Sky Sports. Retrieved 28 April 2019.
  24. ^ a b c "Boss scoops double". Sheffield United FC. 15 May 2019. Retrieved 4 June 2019.
  25. ^ "Sheffield United: Chris Wilder signs new three-year deal as manager". BBC Sport. 9 July 2019.
  26. ^ "Sheffield United: Chris Wilder: Sheffield United boss extends his contract until 2024". BBC Sport. 10 January 2020.
  27. ^ "Managers: Chris Wilder". Soccerbase. Centurycomm. Retrieved 3 June 2019.
  28. ^ "Club Honours". Alfreton Town FC. Archived from the original on 26 February 2018. Retrieved 3 February 2018.
  29. ^ a b "League Managers Association - Chris Wilder". League Managers Association. Retrieved 16 September 2018.
  30. ^ Shield, James (15 April 2017). "Breaking: Sheffield United confirmed champions of League One". The Star. Sheffield. Retrieved 17 April 2017.
  31. ^ "Chris Wilder named Sky Bet League 2 Manager of the Month". Retrieved 29 March 2019.
  32. ^ "Chris Wilder named Sky Bet League 2 Manager of the Month". Retrieved 29 March 2019.
  33. ^ "Chris Wilder named Sky Bet League 2 Manager of the Month". Retrieved 29 March 2019.
  34. ^ "Chris Wilder named Sky Bet League 2 Manager of the Month". Retrieved 29 March 2019.
  35. ^ a b c "More honours for boss Wilder". Sheffield United FC. 23 May 2017. Retrieved 4 June 2019.
  36. ^ "Chris Wilder named Sky Bet League One Manager of the Month".
  37. ^ "Sky Bet Championship: February Manager of the Month winner".
  38. ^ "Sky Bet Championship: April Manager of the Month winner".

External linksEdit