Reasons to Believe
WITH more surprises in the Sky Bet League 2 promotion race expected, Derek Adams has his Argyle side aiming for two more victories to keep the pressure on their rivals.
The Greens' 3-2 defeat to Dagenham & Redbridge on Saturday was not the first - and certainly not the last - time that a side gunning for promotion have slipped up in a match they were expected to win, and Adams is aiming to take a broader look at his side's current situation.
Wins in the Greens' final two fixtures could see them capitalise on any similar slip-ups from Oxford United, Accrington Stanley or Bristol Rovers, so the boss wants his side to continue to work on cutting out mistakes and turning positive statistics into wins.
"We had a lot of opportunities against Dagenham," said Derek, "and the stats will tell you we had the majority of the play. It was just one of these freak afternoons where you find yourself 3-0 down at half time. You've got a long way to get back into the game but the players showed a lot of good determination to try and get back to [try and] win the match.
"We've come off of two fabulous away victories at Portsmouth and Leyton Orient, and we need to go and do that again with the likes of Cambridge and Hartlepool. From our point of view, nobody would've guessed that we would've lost to Dagenham & Redbridge last week, and that's the nature of football.
"We knew we had five games to go; we needed to win four games out of five, and we've still got the possibility of doing that. We've got two games to go and six points to play for, and if we can get these two victories you never know what's going to happen. There's always a twist and a turn over the season."
End-of-season drama seems to be an inevitability in football, and if Argyle do record victories in league games 45 and 46, they will finish on a lofty points total that has earned promotion for sides more often than not, so there is still plenty to play for.
"Our ambition is still to finish in second place," said Adams. "We've got two places up for grabs in the automatic promotion places with two games to go, and we can still finish second or third. Going into the last two games of the season, that's something that we've got to try and do.
"It is possible. We win our two games and we finish on 83 points, and we would be very disappointed if 83 points didn't get you promotion. It's been able to get automatic promotion a good number of times. That's what we've got to try and do. Other teams have to draw or lose games, and that is possible."
The start of the Greens' final push to finish in the top three starts this weekend, as Argyle play their final away game of the campaign against Cambridge United. Whilst the objective for Adams and his side is clear, Cambridge's hopes of making the play-offs hang on another key League 2 fixture taking place tonight.
"Portsmouth play at Wimbledon tonight," said Derek, "so that'll be an interesting game because that can obviously affect Cambridge's chances of getting into the play-offs - or they've still got a chance on Saturday.
"It makes for an exciting game on Saturday. They'll be looking to impress and we're looking to finish the season strongly."