Sheffield United 1 Sheffield Wednesday 0: History man Quinn seals derby prize for Warnock

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The Independent Football

Alan Quinn found his own way of celebrating his manager's decision to stay with the Blades, rather than cutting and running to the South Coast.

Quinn carved himself a slice of Steel City history by becoming the first player for 112 years to score for both sides in the Sheffield derby.

Neil Warnock rescued him from Wednesday 18 months ago when he was not offered a new contract. On Saturday, his goal more than redressed the balance for the one he scored against United in the same fixture three seasons ago.

Mind you, like Warnock's opting to stay with United, it was a line-ball decision. His shot midway through the first half hit his team-mate, Neil Shipperley, on its way into the net and only the referee's ruling that Shipperley was already over the goal-line stopped the effort being disallowed for offside.

"I didn't know what to do when I scored," Quinn said. "I didn't want to make a meal of it in front of the Wednesday fans." It was still an appropriate way to mark Warnock's rejection of Portsmouth's Premiership job offer.

"On Monday and Tuesday, we all thought the gaffer was going," Quinn admitted. "We're delighted he stayed and we owed him that for staying. He's just said: 'Now win the league for me'."

This was not quite a performance to hint towards that outcome, although a first win in four games keeps United in place as Reading's leading challengers.

"It's been a traumatic week, but a great result for us in the end," said Warnock, who gave much of the credit for persuading him to stay to his chairman, Kevin McCabe.

It is McCabe who has convinced the board to "go for it," as Warnock put it - something he reminded his manager of several times during the week.

There was little in Warnock's demeanour here to suggest that he had any second thoughts, although he did change his mind overnight about the shape of his team. Warnock opted to play three up front, a formation which threatened to run Wednesday off their feet in the first 25 minutes.

It was less effective as the game went on, but United still had the reassuring presence of the veterans Craig Short and David Unsworth to hold things together as Wednesday showed commendable resilience to come back into the game.

Warnock does not believe that they will go down; he will not feel totally vindicated over last week's decision unless United go up.

Goal: Quinn (23) 1-0.

Sheffield United (4-3-3): Kenny; Kozluk, Bromby, Short, Unsworth; Montgomery, Jagielka, Quinn; Webber (Ifill, 76), Shipperley (Pericard, 81), Kabba (Tonge, 88). Substitutes not used: Wright, Geary.

Sheffield Wednesday (4-4-2): Weaver; Simek, Coughlan, Wood, Gilbert; Partridge (Eagles, 59), Rocastle (O'Brien, 64), Whelan, Brunt; Graham, Murphy. Substitutes not used: Lee, Adamson (gk), Agbonlahor.

Referee: R Beeby (Northamptonshire).

Booked: Sheffield United Unsworth; Sheffield Wednesday Brunt.

Man of the match: Quinn.

Attendance: 30,558.

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