Birmingham City are on the road again. And in a Championship division that throws up ‘strange’ results, they are being urged to keep their promotion push ticking.
Blues go to Blackpool on Saturday before the pleasant distraction of Europa League action at SC Braga in midweek.
Then it’s successive away games at Cardiff City and Hull City.
“We’ve got a tough sequence,” noted manager Chris Hughton. “We’ve got tough away days coming up at difficult places to go such as your Blackpools and Cardiffs, tough places.
“There’s lots of strange results in this league, away results, and we need to make sure that we are in their fighting and get as many points as we can in this period.”
Tuesday’s victory over Burnley hoisted Blues to eighth in the table, on the fringe of the play-off spots.
It was welcome not only for the points, but from a psychological perspective.
Blues appeared to be heading the same way as Saturday’s draw versus Peterborough United – when they dominated play and spurned a host of chances.
“We tried to follow on from Saturday’s game certainly in the energy and performance,” said Hughton. “We did that in large parts of the game.
“We had some really good scoring opportunities, got into some really good areas.
“The area that we need to do better in is killing games off.
“But we gathered up a momentum after they scored and I felt in the end we got what we deserved.”
Scoring so late – Chris Burke slammed in David Murphy’s cross in the first minute of stoppage-time for the winner – didn’t necessarily surprise Hughton.
Blues have made a habit of forcing goals right at the death.
“It reaffirmed what this group are: they play with lot of spirit, a lot of energy as well.”
One player with bags of that energy is Jonathan Spector, who has been getting through a vast amount of work in central midfield.
Spector, who has also filled-in at right-back this season, said that Blues goal was clear.
“Reaching the play-offs is a realistic objective and I don’t see any reason why we can’t,” he insisted.
“Looking at the league right now we’ve got games in hand.
“Juggling the schedule with the European games as well as moulding a new team of players is always going to take time, but I feel we’re finally getting there and I think we’re only going to kick on.
“We didn’t have the best of starts, but we’re growing in each and every game.
“Our aim is to reach the play-offs, but finishing in the top two is not out of the question.
“It’s far too early for the pundits to say Southampton or West Ham will be in the top two.
“Southampton are on a great run but there’s every chance that they’ll slip up and West Ham have lost a couple of games.”
Spector said Hughton and the Blues squad were at one in their quest.
“Under Chris Hughton there is a very good team spirit.
“You wouldn’t find many players with a bad word to say about him.
“He shows the players respect, so automatically the players are going to respect him.”