BLACKBURN Rovers boss Gary Bowyer has conceded his side will have to go on a ‘hell of a run’ if they are to snatch a play-off place.
But the performances they have produced in their last two outings gives optimistic Bowyer hope they could yet do just that.
Rovers have yet to win more than two matches in succession all season and are eight points behind sixth-placed Reading with nine games to play – the first of which comes at basement boys Millwall today (3pm).
But Bowyer saw enough in the rousing 1-1 home draw with table-topping Leicester City and the battling 3-3 draw at Watford, who had won their previous six home matches without conceding a goal, to suggest that Rovers can string a run of victories together.
“We realise now we’ve got to put a hell of a run together of back-to-back wins,” said Bowyer.
“That’s why there was so much frustration, disappointment and anger after the Watford game.
“But the squad is capable of doing it. They’ve proved in the last two games that they can go and match anybody.
“When we went 3-2 down in the 88th minute at Watford not many people would have said we would have had a chance of getting something from the game, which would have been totally unjust.
“But I’ve watched it again on the video and it was impressive – as soon as they scored we were ready.
“There was no-one lying on the floor feeling sorry for themselves, we were waiting for them to come back and take the kick-off.
“That mindset and mentality helped us getting something from the game.”
With Reading and Nottingham Forest losing, Rovers would have moved within six points of the play-offs had they been able to hold on to the lead given to them by David Dunn and Craig Conway at Watford.
Bowyer said: “It’s happened once or twice when results have gone kindly for us and we’ve not been able to seize on.
“That something we need to address but like I say the players have got confidence, belief and determination going into these big nine games.”
The last time Rovers visited the Den to take on Millwall, in April last year, they desperately needed a win to avoid being dragged closer to a second successive relegation.
And thanks to Jordan Rhodes’ winning penalty, which was awarded after Grant Hanley’s barnstorming run into the box was ended abruptly by Danny Shittu, they got one.
Bowyer, who was Rovers’ caretaker manager at the time, said: “If we hadn’t got that result, who knows, we might not have been playing in this league this year. That was the size of that win.
“We knew that was our game in hand and we knew we had to win it to get us clear of the trouble we found ourselves in.
“The lads performed magnificently in a very hostile environment that night, it was fierce.”