Putting It Right
ARGYLE captain Conor Hourihane admits to suffering the same frustrations over the Pilgrims’ inconsistent end-of-season form.The young Irishman leads his team-mates into the Greens’ penultimate away Sky Bet League 2 game of the season on the back of a disappointing home defeat to play-off rivals Oxford United.
The 2-0 reversal followed an uplifting 2-1 midweek victory at Newport that revitalised Argyle’s hopes of finishing in the all-important top seven after a streak of three winless matches had seen them slip out of the play-off qualifying positions, which they had reached on the back of four wins in five games.
“It’s been a frustrating couple of weeks at times,” said Conor. “We get so close to really pushing into the play-offs and cementing a place, then we go backwards. It’s something we need to put right. We can’t put our finger on it. It’s happened two or three times now.”
Argyle are back at Home Park on Easter Monday and entertain AFC Wimbledon next Saturday, before visiting Portsmouth for a Dockyard Derby to round off their league campaign.
“We’re looking to get as many points as we can from the last four games,” said Conor. “We need results to go our way and, hopefully, it will happen, but, first, we are just looking forward to Bury and putting it right. Like the Newport game, we need to win. We need a win on Friday to set things up for Monday.”
Play-offs or not, Conor has witnessed the rebirth of the Pilgrims following their brush with extinction in 2011 and consecutive battles just to stay in the Football League.
“There has been massive progress,” he said. “In the three years I have been here, we’ve been having six-pointer games at this stage of the season that are very nerve-wracking. It’s nice to go out and play with a little bit of enjoyment to try to achieve something.
“At the same time, we haven’t achieved anything. Finishing eighth or ninth doesn’t count for anything. To get into the play-offs is something we would love to do. Whether we do or not this season is another story. We have made it hard enough for ourselves and we have had our chances.
“There has been improvement but, if you finish 16th or you finish ninth, it’s basically the same thing.”