Alan Biggs at Large: Why Blades boss Nigel Adkins owes a debt of gratitude to the Owls

All smiles for Nigel Adkins during his side's win over Doncaster Rovers
All smiles for Nigel Adkins during his side's win over Doncaster Rovers

Football’s little sub-plots are amazing.

For instance, the discovery that Nigel Adkins owes the breakthrough in management that has eventually landed at Sheffield United to a goodwill gesture... from Sheffield Wednesday.

It’s one more reason why I believe we should try, where possible, to put the basest of tribal tendencies to one side. I’ll explain.

Adkins was happily working as Scunthorpe physio under Brian Laws when his boss was lured to Hillsborough in 2006.

A deal was tied up for Nigel to follow Laws from Lincolnshire to South Yorkshire.

Laws himself takes up the story: “Nigel was a very good physio and it was only by chance that he fell into management.

All the paperwork was done for him to join me at Wednesday but I had a good relationship with Scunthorpe and didn’t want to leave them empty handed, so we agreed for Nigel to stay there while they found a new manager.

“What happened was that the team kept winning! We had a meeting where I was asked if I minded if Nigel stayed at Scunthorpe despite the deal in place.

“I agreed because it was a good opportunity for him and I’m delighted he’s done so well.

“He’s a good organiser and always positive, one of life’s brightest people.

“It can be p****** down with rain and Nigel will come in full of the joys of spring!”

Bramall Lane might not be bathed in sunlight right now but maybe that light at the end of the tunnel is showing after the 3-0 win over Fleetwood on Tuesday.