ARGYLE manager Derek Adams believes that the Pilgrims have still had an excellent start to the season despite suffering a third successive defeat in eight days.
The Pilgrims’ 2-1 loss at Morecambe, combined with earlier home beatings by Grimsby Town and Barnet, cost them the leadership of Sky Bet League Two which they have held for three months.
Their storming opening to the campaign means that, even though they have failed to take a single point from their last three matches, they are still level on points with new table-toppers Carlisle United.
Derek said: “We’ve got 38 points; we’re second in the league; we’re only off the top on goal-difference; we’ve won 12 games – we’ve won more games than anybody else in this league.
“Some people have to have a wee reality check. We’re not Barcelona or Manchester City – we’re Plymouth Argyle. We’re working really hard; we’ve got good players in the dressing-room; and, I’ve already stated before, we’re punching well above our weight.”
In his previous management role, Derek steadily improved the fortunes of Ross County, and has started out the same way in his first 18 months at Argyle. With success, though, comes expectation.
“In my time at the football club, we have moved on and moved on,” he said, “and we continue to do that. Last year, we had the tenth-highest budget in the league and we were able to get to the play-off final; that tells you how well we did.
“Similarly this year, we have got a very good squad and we have done really well to get here. We have lost three games on the bounce – that’s what happens. You have just got to pick yourself up for the FA Cup next week and we hope to progress to the next round.
“It’s an excellent start to the season. We’re at the top of the league; we have got 38 points after 19 games of the season. It’s because of how well we’ve done that people get disappointed. That’s the nature of my job.
“Sometimes I’m a problem for myself because we have become so successful that people get disillusioned at times. That happened at my old job at Ross County, when I finished champions [of the Scottish Championship], fifth and seventh [in the Scottish Premiership], because I am very good at my job.
“We have got a win percentage of over 50% and, for a team that is like that, sometimes people have just got to chill out, have a reality check, and believe they are not as good as they are.
“We’re a team that has transformed over the close season, done really well, and are ahead of schedule.
“It’s disappointing we haven’t come away with a victory but, over my time at the football club [the fans] have had a lot of good away days - and they can’t be too disappointed with the form this season.”