But Adkins, speaking as his team prepares for Saturday’s pivotal League One fixture with Millwall, warned their hopes will be over if people adopt a defeatist attitude between now and the end of the campaign.
“If everyone can just be positive, keep working hard and keep believing then we have an opportunity,” he said. “There’s every chance we can still reach our objective, every chance we can still do what we want to do.
“Yes, it’s a challenge, but people have got to approach it with relish and in the right manner because that’s what life is about; overcoming challenges, not shying away from them.”
United trail Bradford City, who occupy the final play-off berth, by six points with 10 matches remaining.
Their next opponents, who five months ago triumphed 2-1 at Bramall Lane, are fifth but yesterday saw midfielder Jed Wallace’s loan spell terminated by his parent club Wolverhampton Wanderers. The 21-year-old made 14 appearances after moving to the capital.
Kenny Jackett, the Wolves manager, conceded his decision could have a detrimental effect upon Millwall’s top six chances but insisted: “We have watched Jed closely at Millwall, and he has enjoyed a very positive impact on the team with his performances.
“At 21 years of age, we are now keen to get him back to Wolves and for him to look to make the step-up and bridge the gap between League One and the Championship.”
“Jed is an exceptional talent and we have really enjoyed having him as part of our group for the last few months,” Millwall manager Neil Harris said. “It is a shame that he is heading back earlier than we hoped but we appreciate that Jed can return to Molineux and have a major impact for the rest of the season at Wolves.”