Sebastian Larsson believes Birmingham City must rid themselves of their tendency to leak late goals if they are to remain in the Premiership.
The Swede, who has been handed an international reprieve after initially being axed by head coach Lars Lagerback, has featured in all but one of the club's league matches this season but has become concerned at the way in which Blues are losing points to late slip ups.
Larsson came on as a second half substitute in the heartbreaking derby loss to Aston Villa last weekend and watched as Gabriel Agbonlahor sneaked ahead of Liam Ridgewell with two minutes remaining to steal a 2-1 victory.
It was an incident that has been typical of Birmingham this term. Steve Bruce's men have relinquished five points by conceding in the last quarter of games, points that would put them well clear of the relegation zone instead of just three.
"It is tight down there," Larsson said in reference to the fact six teams are within one match of second bottom. "We are not really where we want to be. We are not in the relegation zone and it has been okay.
"But there are still little things we talk about. We seem to lose the games that are tight at the moment but in all the games we are playing quite well at times.
"If we keep that going, then I am sure we will be picking up more points and we will be alright. We have to find a way to win these tight games.
"Last week against Everton we conceded in the 93rd and the 94th minute and against Villa we conceded with a few minutes to go. We need to keep our heads high and go again."
As painful as both instances were perhaps the most costly example came in the second game of the season when former Blues striker Stern John scored a last minute equaliser to give Sunderland a 2-2 draw at St Andrew's.
Mark Noble grabbed the winner with 20 minutes to go against West Ham United and then Lee Carsley and James Vaughn struck for Everton and Agbonlahor last Sunday.
The derby match was yet another from which Larsson felt Blues deserved something: "We weren't very good in the first half," he admitted.
"There wasn't much in it but they got the goal. In the second half we came back better and Mikael scored a good goal and we looked like the team that could go on and win it."
The match turned when Agbonlahor diverted Liam Ridgewell's effort and then lost the Birmingham captain to flick the winner.
"They clear a header off the line and score the other end. It is cruel but we have got to pick ourselves up and go again," Larsson said.
"It is important not to get too down. We responded well. The game could have gone either way. It is tough. It is not nice to lose the derby and everyone is disappointed.
"But that is football at times. In the second half we showed some determination that we wanted to win it."
On a positive note Cameron Jerome to return from yesterday's hernia operation in time for the next game against Portsmouth on Saturday week. Mehdi Nafti has also recovered from the leg injury he picked up against Villa and has joined up with the Tunisia squad.
Meanwhile chairman David Gold has expressed his fear that Carson Yeung's proposed takeover might not go through.
"At the moment the deal is not done and over the past two weeks I have gone from being 90 per cent sure that the sale would go through to about 75 per cent," Gold said.
"I can't give any reason for that but I just don't have the same confidence that I had two weeks ago - and I think David Sullivan feels the same.
"Only Carson Yeung can pull out of this by failing to meet the deadline. Myself and David Sullivan have given our word that we will sell. But it's all a case of 'show me the money'."