FORMER Oxford United boss Chris Wilder has been appointed Sheffield United manager for the second time.

The 56-year-old takes over a Blades side bottom of the Premier League, and four points shy of safety. Paul Heckingbottom’s sacking was announced shortly before Wilder’s appointment was revealed.

Wilder, who spent just over five years with the U’s between December 2008 and January 2014, has agreed a contract until the summer of 2025 at Bramall Lane.

He told the Blades website: “Quite simply it was an opportunity which I just couldn’t turn down. Just like in 2016, when this club comes calling, it is not something you pass up.

“This is Sheffield United, it is my team and I am thrilled to be back. We find ourselves in a difficult position, I understand that, but I think I can make a difference.”

His first spell with the Blades saw him guide the club to the Sky Bet League One title, before finishing second in the Championship and ninth in the Premier League in later seasons.

Wilder has since had spells with Middlesbrough and Watford.

His time with the U’s meanwhile is remembered fondly, having ended the club’s four-year exile in non-league football in 2010 by leading the side to promotion via the play-offs.