THOUGH his team’s form still jars, Gateshead boss Ian Bogie has changed his war cry, and insists their promotion battle rages on.
The Tynesiders stand ninth in Blue Square Bet Premier, four places and seven points from a play-off spot, having won just two of their last eight league games.
Last week’s defeat at Braintree Town prompted Bogie to write off Gateshead’s chances of finishing in the crucial top-five places.
But while admitting that task remains a tough one ahead of today’s trip to Cambridge United, further reflection has quelled his pessimism.
And keen to broaden perspectives to incorporate the “full package” of his side’s achievements during five years in management, Bogie believes the “future looks bright”.
“When you finish games and reflect on them you sometimes get a bit wrapped up in the moment, and it was really disappointing,” said Bogie, without Yemi Odubade (foot) and with doubts over Jamie Chandler (calf), Kris Gate (back) and Alan O’Brien (toe).
“It’s going to be a tough task but having listened to Steve Burr’s comments at Kidderminster, while there are still 30 points to play for, and we’ve got 57, there’s still a good chance.
“Ultimately though, we’ve got to start winning our games, starting on Saturday.
“We were disappointed last weekend but as a club we’ve got to look at the full package, and how we’ve progressed over the last few years.
“We’ve been a full-time club for less than two seasons now, but already the squad we’ve assembled is the strongest Gateshead have ever had in their history.
“Hull City, a Championship club, played a reserve game here the other night, and we beat them 2-1.
“Their team was littered with players who cost millions of pounds, so that’s an achievement for our squad. Middlesbrough came here the other week, we drew (1-1) with them, and we ran Sunderland very close (0-1).
“We’re in the Durham Challenge Cup semi-final, and the youth team are doing fantastically well in the Youth Alliance, and in the quarter-finals of their cup.
“And we’re still in with a chance of getting into the play-offs. Some will maybe say it’s a slim chance but it’s a chance.
“There are seven more Saturdays or so remaining of the season, so we’re still in a healthy position.
“I’ve got to look at the big picture, and go away and reflect on everything that’s happened at the club, which a lot of people don’t see, and the future looks bright.“