Shipperley gets the nod to keep Blades buoyant

Sheffield United 1 Wolves 0

What's more, there is no sign that Neil Warnock's team are about to take their foot off the accelerator after a beginning to the campaign in which they have an unblemished home record of seven wins from seven games and 11 from 13 overall.

Wolves had been determined not to allow the home side to dictate terms, presenting the division's most attacking side with a defensive challenge by fielding three strikers of their own. But it was United who found the decisive edge.

The crucial moment came after 16 minutes, when a moment of poor communication between Wolves defender Joleon Lescott and goalkeeper Michael Oakes handed United a free corner. David Unsworth, whose cross had been headed behind by Lescott, practically out of Oakes's hands, delivered a deep corner from the right, Chris Morgan headed back across goal and Neil Shipperley nodded the ball in from close range.

Wolves might have levelled matters, Unsworth surviving a penalty appeal after bringing down Carl Cort. Later, Rob Kozluk's intercepting header stopped Cort getting to a Seol Ki-Hyeon cross with Paddy Kenny stranded. But, at the other end, Steve Kabba's screwed-back shot beat Oakes only to hit a post.

The threat to the Sheffield goal from Wolves was negligible until late in the game. The second-half deployment of Darren Anderton in a sweeper role gave them a focal point in possession but it was not until Hoddle introduced George Ndah and Mark Davies for the final quarter that the home side came under sustained pressure. Two chances fell to Cort, who volleyed a Davies cross wide and was off target again with a glancing header from Anderton's free-kick.

Hoddle was disappointed but remains optimistic. "Poorly though we played, there was nothing much between the sides and I still feel I have a squad that is capable of winning promotion," he said. "And I'm certain Neil Warnock will not be looking at the table and thinking it is all over."

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