Team 33 | "I think both Sheffield clubs will get back into the Premier League in the next five years"

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Team 33 | "I think both Sheffield clubs will get back into the Premier League in the next five years"


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We'd have to go back all the way to the 1993-94 season for the last time that Sheffield Wednesday and Sheffield United took each other on in the Steel City derby at Premier League level.

Since then, any meetings have been confined to Championship level and even below. But Sheffield, which is also home to the oldest existing football club in the shape of Sheffield FC, has an important place in the game through .

The Steel City derby has been ongoing as a competitive fixture since a February 1900 FA Cup tie and replay, and ever since 1965, Richard Crooks has been in attendance.

A Wednesdayite, he has published a new book called Wednesday v United: The Sheffield Derby which takes an in-depth look at the history of both clubs and their derby interactions from the very beginning to the present day. 

Crooks joined me on Team 33 to discuss both clubs' most famous clashes as well as their highest and lowest points.

But I also got his thoughts on whether he feels optimistic about seeing both Sheffield clubs back in the Premier League again after lengthy absences from the top flight.

"I'm an optimist, even though I've followed Wednesday for more than 50 years," he said.

"I think both Sheffield clubs will get back into the Premier League in the next five years. And I hope they do because I'd like the derby to be in the top division in the English leagues."

In terms of factors that lead him to have that bit of optimism, Crooks points towards is not only a new owner for Wednesday but a new manager in the shape of Jos Luhukay.

"I think he's got the team working, he's blooded new players from the Wednesday academy in the team and they're starting to gel together. They're going in the right direction," said Crooks, who does feel promotion is very unlikely this season but that they have set up good structures to push on from next season.

As for United, it's "momentum and a strong team spirit" as well as "quality players" that sees Crooks sensing that they can "take more strides forward".

You can listen to the full interview on the podcast player below or on iTunes as well as the video player above:  

 Also on this week's show, Joe Coffey, Killian Woods and Derek Ryan joined me to chat about Liverpool, Man United and other matters.

But Killian also told us about the story behind the Troy Deeney Fantasy story as the Watford striker settled a dispute in Killian's own draft league. 

Apart from Gary Neville and Arsenal Fan TV founder Robbie Lyle, recent interviews on Team 33 include former Man United cult hero Andrei Kanchelskis, ex-England international Carlton Palmer, former Newcastle and Everton left back Alessandro Pistone, Chelsea legends Bobby Tambling and Paddy Mulligan, Dutch legend Johan Neeskens, ex-England striker Darius Vassell, Liverpool legend David Fairclough, former Ireland midfielder Mark Kinsella, USA captain Eric Lichaj and former Everton forward Tomasz Radzinski. Plus our in-depth chats with Tony CotonPackie BonnerNobby SolanoRon Atkinson and Alan Curbishley are still available on iTunes. You can find them all in one place by subscribing to Team 33 on iTunes.


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