Boss Adkins outlines his blueprint for the Blades

Nigel Adkins manager of Sheffield Utd
Nigel Adkins manager of Sheffield Utd
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Sheffield United manager Nigel Adkins has outlined the philosophy he believes will eventually deliver success to Bramall Lane.

Adkins, whose side are 10th in League One and trail the play-offs by nine points, delivered arguably their most impressive performance of the season last weekend in a goalless draw with high-flying Gillingham.

The United manager, who took charge of the South Yorkshire club in June, tried a number of different formations before settling on 3-5-2.

And the former Scunthorpe and Southampton chief said: “No matter what the formation is, I like my players to play quick, fast and attacking football.

“You saw against Gillingham that, against a side above us in the table, we created a lot of chances and were frustrated not to get the three points.

“I like us to play quickly and then, when we lose the ball, be compact and get it back quickly. Pass the ball calmly, too.

“Whatever formation we go with on the day, those are the principles that I want my sides to play with.”

United travel to neighbours Chesterfield this weekend with their play-off hopes mathematically possible, but realistically improbable.

“What a game that is,” Adkins enthused.

“Chesterfield away, a local derby... I’m looking forward to it.

“We have to believe we can make the play-offs. We needed to win on Saturday, really, but we haven’t done and we picked up a point. But we put a lot of effort in, and that was appreciated by the supporters.

“We’ve been performing well recently and have to stay positive. Maybe people get a bit frustrated with that, but that’s who I am as a person and that’s not going to change.

“We have a bunch of honest, hard-working players and that’s shown out there. We’ve changed the formation at times, but that’s been one constant.

“Yes, it was frustrating to only get a point but we must take stock and regroup for the next game at Chesterfield, which will be a good one.”

United’s U18s, meanwhile, extended their unbeaten run to four games after a 0-0 draw with Southern title winners Watford on Saturday.