There are at least three reasons why Darragh MacAnthony believes Peterborough United can still win promotion from League One this season.
The Posh chairman insists his team will be flying again once their most exciting playmakers, Erhun Oztumer, Jon Taylor and Marcus Maddison start playing in the same team.
Injuries and the patience required with Oztumer adapting to a much higher standard of football have stopped them stepping out together so far, but Taylor’s return to action following knee surgery could make it happen in Saturday’s home match with Colchester.
It might be a problem for manager Darren Ferguson to get them all into the same starting line-up - it might include playing one of them in an advanced role -but the club’s ultimate boss wants to see it happen eventually.
“It’s too easy to point to injuries as an excuse for our recent form,” MacAnthony said.
“They have been horrific at times and any team would have missed the likes of Maddison and Taylor.
“Once they start playing with Erhun we should be able to get back to the exciting, attacking football that we all want to see.
“I believe a team is only as good as it’s strongest players and in my opinion we just haven’t been able to field our strongest team often enough.
“If you ask me whether or not Marcus, Jon and Erhun playing together on a regular basis would have enabled us to win more games, the answer would be yes.
“And if you ask me whether or not having those players in the same side would help us deliver the energetic, entertaining football we all want, I would have to say yes again.
“We have to put the first-half of the season behind us now though and concentrate on winning enough games to get back into promotion contention. I firmly believe we can still go up. It’s a very close division this season.”
Winger Taylor has scored twice in 14 Posh appearances since moving to London Road from Shrewsbury in the summer. However he had been hampered by a persistent knee before undergoing surgery in November.
Taylor hasn’t played since the 0-0 draw at Walsall on November 15.
Attacking midfielder Maddison enjoyed a blistering start to his Posh career scoring six goals in 12 games before damaging ankle ligaments in training in October.
He appeared in both matches over the Christmas period and scored and created a second goal on his return from a lay-off in the Boxing Day defeat at Chesterfield.
Maddison is the Posh top scorer with seven goals this season,
Oztumer has been Posh’s most consistent performer since breaking into the side last month.
The Turkish midfielder scored a cracking set-piece goal on his full Football League debut at Leyton Orient on December 13 - the only win in the last 10 Posh matches.