Nigel Adkins has told his players that quitters will not be tolerated at Bramall Lane.
Sheffield United, whose former striker Ched Evans resumes his bid to overturn a rape conviction at the Court of Appeal this morning, slipped to 12th in the League One table after being beaten by Millwall last weekend.
But Adkins, who revealed after the match that youngster Che Adams had been omitted from United’s starting eleven after failing to “work hard” in training, confirmed coaching staff are set to take a dim view of anyone they suspect has given up on a top-six place.
“I’m an optimistic, positive guy and I’ll keep going until the very end. If that means the final minute of injury time against Scunthorpe on the final day of the season then so be it,” he said. “That’s what it will be. We are doing everything we can to get in there.
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“Am I expecting everybody else to be the same? Yes, of course. Without a shadow of a doubt.”
United return to action against Crewe Alexandra on Friday, six points behind neighbours Barnsley who occupy the fourth and final play-off berth. Adams, aged 19, faces a battle to win back his place in the team after leaving Adkins’ nonplussed by his performances at the Steelphalt Academy.
“Che did not have a particularly good week on the training ground,” the United manager added. “He’s got to realise he’s got to work hard. He had half an hour to make an impact after coming on at Millwall and he should have done more than he’s gone and done.”
Evans, meanwhile, has travelled to London for the first day of his hearing in the capital. Evans made 113 appearances for United before being found guilty of rape in but has continued to maintain his innocence.