It is hard to imagine that there was a time, not too long ago, when Coventry City were sitting uncomfortably in the bottom three of the Coca-Cola Championship and fearing a battle gainst relegation.

But a lot can change between November and March. Now, after a 2-0 victory against Sheffield United, Coventry are ninth and in the hunt for a play-off place.

The renaissance, if unexpected, is deserved and, whatever happens between now and the end of the season, will act as a foundation for the 2006-07 campaign. Micky Adams, the Coventry manager, appears to be working a minor miracle.

Goals by Gary McSheffrey and Dele Adebola sealed the victory against the team who are second in the table and increased the optimism at Ricoh Arena.

"It was a mammoth effort against a good side," Adams said. "It was a fantastic team display. Our first goal came about in one of United's transitions, Geary and Jagielka were swapping positions and McSheffrey found himself in a position where I didn't want him to be but he read Morgan and finished well.

"We knew United would up the tempo in the second half and we defended well as a unit. We were under pressure but I can't remember Marton Fulop having to make too many saves."

There was no awkwardness at the result for Adams, even though he grew up as a Sheffield United supporter. Indeed, he wants to ensure that Coventry help Sheffield gain promotion.

"Sheffield United can rest assured we'll try to do them a favour by doing everything we can to beat Leeds United," Adams said. "Sheffield United have enough quality, but it is a case of them believing it. I had a blip at Leicester City and still got them up."