Stevenage boss Smith disappointed with a season of contrasting fortunes
- Credit: Archant
STEVENAGE boss Gary Smith believes the contrast from how the club started the season compared to their current run of form is the most disappointing factor so far this campaign.
Boro, who host strugglers Colchester United on Saturday, have lost their last five league games, and are in danger of being dragged into a League 1 relegation battle.
And while the former Colorado Rapids manager admits that the recent run of successive defeats is far from good enough, it is the contrast with the early season form that hurts most.
“The biggest disappointment for everyone is not that we’re losing games, not that everybody’s down in the mouth, it’s the disappointment of losing the opportunity that we created for ourselves, which was to push on again and maybe fight for that top six,” said Smith.
“I think everybody is disappointed that that might have gone away from us and it’s [time to be] checking ourselves, stopping the rot, getting back into the groove again and feeling that belief about the group.
“There’s no doubt about it there’s good enough players in the dressing room, we have got a strong enough squad and there’s no doubt in my mind we have big enough characters.”
Tuesday’s narrow 1-0 defeat away at another side struggling at the wrong end of the table, Scunthorpe United, means Boro are now eight points clear from the final relegation place.
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Defeat to Colchester on Saturday, and if other results go against them, that gap could be down to five points.
But Smith is confident his players can turn the season around and pull themselves away from a potential relegation dogfight.
“There isn’t a problem [with team morale] at all,” added Smith.
“It [against Scunthorpe] was a narrow defeat and unfortunately at the moment we are finding ourselves on the wrong end of results.
“My job is two-fold; firstly it is to make sure we turn those results that have gone against us into something more positive.
“The second one is to make sure we keep our direction, where we are going.
“What we were achieving in the first half of the season was quite remarkable. I think everybody would have looked at it and 9/10 people if not more would have said it was unachievable. But we got ourselves in a great position.”
In the first 11 games this season Stevenage had accrued 23 points, in the second 11 games they managed 14 points while in their last 10 matches Boro have picked up just six points.