The Fightback Starts Now
GARY Sawyer cannot wait for the Pilgrims to replicate their amazing unbeaten Sky Bet League One run of last season.
A 3-0 defeat at Portsmouth on Saturday has left Argyle at the bottom of the table after the first six matches of the campaign.
A similarly slow start to 2017-18 persisted well into the season and, although the Pilgrims rallied to finish a remarkable and magnificent seventh in the table, arguably cost them a place in the play-offs.
“It’s September 1 today – we have got the whole season ahead of us,” said the Argyle captain. “We have got a lot of games and we need to get the belief back into the dressing-room that we can run over the top of boys. We’re fit; we just need to take out individual mistakes.
“There is a lot of time left in the season, but this is something we need to sort out now, today.
“It took us until December to get out of the bottom last season. We left it late, and that’s not something we want to do this year.
“We didn’t want to start like [we have]. Unfortunately, we have done that. It’s down to us, now, to put the work in. There’s a lot of points left on the table.
“We’ve been in this position before. We now need to work back to getting to back what we were like last year, back to getting stronger. We’re obviously conceding too many goals and it starts there.”
In another echo of last season, the away dressing-room door at Fratton Park was closed for a long time after the game while a post-mortem on the match, and on the season, was carried out.
The same happened following a home defeat by Fleetwood in 2017-18, and was later seen as a turning-point.
“We’ve had a long chat with each other in there, the boys and the coaching staff,” said Gary. “Everyone aired what they wanted to say.
“Against Portsmouth, it’s always a tough game – we know that; they are flying; they are riding high and we are struggling where we are at the minute.
“It’s not like us to come and get pushed aside; it’s normally tight games. We pride ourselves on that through every game, not just this one. We’ve let that slip a bit.
“It’s now about getting our heads back on it and getting back to the training-ground – that’s the only place where we can sort it out.
“No-one is defeated in that dressing-room; everyone is ready to go. That starts again on Monday."