Sheffield United took the Premier League by storm during the 2019/20 campaign. Chris Wilder's newly promoted plucky underdogs had pundits salivating over their overlapping centre backs, and were right in the mix for a European spot prior to the three month coronavirus enforced break.
However, the Blades have taken second season syndrome to a whole new level this term. The absence of the instrumental Jack O'Connell, the lack of home supporters, the loss of Dean Henderson and a severe lack of creativity have contributed to Sheffield United's disastrous start to the season, leaving them marooned in the relegation zone.
How much worse can it get for the Blades? Here are all the unwanted Premier League records they'll be attempting to avoid in 2021.
1. Fewest Premier League points
Current holders: Derby County (2007/08) - 11
Derby of 2007/08 are proudly the worst ever team in Premier League history - but on current form, Sheffield United are on course to underperform even the Rams.
Billy Davies and Paul Jewell's side took an average of 0.3 points per game as they hurtled towards the Championship, but with just two points from their opening 16 fixtures, Sheffield United are currently averaging just 0.125 points per game.
Carry on like this and Chris Wilder's side will set a spectacularly new all-time low Premier League points record of five.
2. Fewest wins in a season
Current holders: Derby (2007/08) - one
True to form, Derby's 2007/08 side recorded just one win all season - a 1-0 victory over Newcastle on 17 September 2007. This result accounted for 27% of their final Premier League points tally.
Unfortunately for Derby, wins were not like buses, and they would go another 36 league games without tasting victory - a run that lasted nearly a year - before beating Sheffield United 2-1 in the Championship on 14 September 2008.
One win in 2021 will see the Blades draw level with Derby.
3. Most consecutive games without a win from the start of the season
Current holders: QPR (2012/13) - 16
Despite signing Park Ji-sung, Jose Bosingwa and Julio Cesar in the summer transfer window, QPR's squad assembled of players that were quite good four years earlier struggled to get going during the 2012/13 season, and they had to wait until 15 December to taste victory in the Premier League.
In terms of date, Sheffield United have already surpassed that record thanks to the Premier League's late start, and their defeat to Burnley on 29 December saw the Blades draw level with QPR's run of 16 games without a win.
Fail to beat Crystal Palace on 2 January and the record is the Blades'.
4. Most consecutive games without a win
Current holders: Derby (2007/08) - 32
Derby very much peaked in September during the 2007/08 campaign. After their win over Newcastle six games in, they then failed to pick up another three points for the entirety of the campaign.
Sheffield United are currently without a win since their 3-0 victory over Chelsea on 11 July. Having lost their final three games of the 2019/20 season, the Blades have gone 19 consecutive Premier League games without a win.
The Blades can equal Derby's record of 32 games without victory should they continue to fail to pick up three points until their clash at home to Aston Villa on 20 March, and they will break the record and will have gone 33 successive games without a win if they are unable to get the better of Leeds at Elland Road on 3 April.
5. Most defeats in a season
Current holders: Ipswich Town (1994/95), Sunderland (2005/06), Derby (2007/08) - 29
There's stiff competition for the most defeats record, with Sunderland and Ipswich keeping mainstay record breakers Derby company - although Ipswich notched up 29 defeats when the season was still 42 games long.
Having lost 14 of their first 16 league games, this is another record that Sheffield United are on course to break.
The Blades have lost 87.5% of their Premier League games thus far, and if they continue in this vein of form, Wilder's side will conclude the season with 33 defeats.
6. Fewest home wins in a season
Current holders: Sunderland (2005/06), Derby (2007/08) - one
Both Sunderland and Derby recorded a solitary home win during their relegation campaigns - Derby over Newcastle in their third match at Pride Park that term, while Sunderland waited until the final home game of the season to taste victory at the Stadium of Light with a win over Fulham.
Sheffield United have 11 home games remaining this season to avoid this record - including potentially winnable matches against West Brom, Crystal Palace and Burnley on the final day of the season.
Could the Blades be the first team in Premier League history to fail to win at home all season?
7. Most home defeats in a season
Current holders: Sunderland (2002/03, 2005/06), Huddersfield Town (2018/19) - 14
Sheffield United are halfway to equalling the most home defeats suffered in a season, having lost seven of their first eight at Bramall Lane.
On current form, they're on course to better the record currently shared by Huddersfield and Sunderland. The Blades have lost 87.5% of their home games thus far, and if they replicate this form in 2021, they will finish the season with 17 home defeats.
8. Fewest goals scored at home in a season
Current holders: Manchester City (2006/07), Huddersfield (2018/19) - 10
To their credit, Sheffield United don't exactly ship goals - it's at the other end where their problems have been this season.
The Blades have only scored eight goals in 16 games this season, and just four of those goals have come on home soil.
Wilder's side are currently averaging 0.5 goals per game at Brammall Lane this season, and if they continue in this goal scoring form then they would finish the season with 10 home goals to equal the current top flight record - a tally recorded by Manchester City in 2006/07, who actually went on to finish a respectable 14th.
9. Fewest away wins in a season
Current holders: Leeds United (1992/93), Coventry City (1999/2000), Wolves (2003/04), Norwich (2004/05), Derby (2007/08), Hull City (2009/10) - zero
Alas, a record Sheffield United cannot break but only equal.
Fail to pick up three points in their remaining 11 games on the road and the Blades will become the seventh team in Premier League history to never win an away match all season - and they are in illustrious company.
Both Leeds and Coventry survived the drop despite never tasting victory on the road.
10. Most away defeats in a season
Current holders: Burnley (2009/10) - 17
Sheffield United are narrowly on course to equal Burnley's record of 17 home defeats in a season, and if their 87.5% loss rate on the road continues, they will also finish the season with 17 away defeats.
The Blades could still beat Burnley's record if they lose each of their remaining 11 away games this season - but there's absolutely no margin for error.
Source : 90min