Football

Sheffield United secure first EPL win of the season

Sheffield United remain nine points below the English Premier League safety zone and face Tottenham Hotspur, Manchester United and Manchester City in their next three games, but nothing could dampen the joy of a first win of the season yesterday morning (Singapore time).

Billy Sharp's second-half penalty proved enough for a 1-0 triumph over 10-man Newcastle United and snap a 17-match winless streak in the league since the start of the campaign.

It was thoroughly deserved, with their football reminiscent of last season when Chris Wilder's side challenged for a European spot before finishing ninth.

Even during this campaign, in which they had lost 15 and drawn two of their first 17 games, the Blades have not suffered any real drubbings, but points have proved elusive.

"(186 days without a win) I have been counting! Every minute of every hour of every day! It feels good, I'm delighted," Wilder said.

"We should have got more results, but the performance was good... I imagine the sending-off and the penalty will be talked about, but we were value for the victory tonight."

The penalty - awarded by the VAR for a handball by centre-back Federico Fernandez - incurred the ire of Newcastle manager Steve Bruce, who had Ryan Fraser sent off just before the end of the first half.

"The penalty baffles me. The referee got it spot-on in real time," said Bruce, whose team are now winless in six league games and down in 15th spot.

"It hit (Fernandez's) hand, but it's not intentional. It could have been a foul on him as well.

"How someone on a TV screen can overturn it is beyond me. It's pathetic... Week in week out, it's ruining the game." - REUTERS

Football