They may have not won in their last nine but Paul Dickov is unwavering in his belief that Rovers will survive this season.
Though his side slipped to another defeat at Blackburn on Saturday, Dickov’s confidence in avoiding the drop was only boosted by the performance at Ewood Park.
Key to the boss’ belief is the steady flow of players returning from injury plus general positivity about the transfer window.
“I’ve always had the belief that we’d get out of it,” Dickov said. “I’ve always believed if we can get through the spell with the eight or nine injuries and not be adrift at the bottom then we’d be okay.
“Once they started to come back and we were able to add to the squad then I always thought we’d be more than okay.
“I know I keep saying it but anyone who was at Blackburn for that second half will see that we’re good enough.
“It’s not just the way we played – we looked really spirited and like we wanted it.
“Sometimes you see teams that are down there who lack spirit and confidence.
“We maybe showed that in the first half but if I can take any positives out of the game, in the second half they performed like I know they can.”
James Husband, Bongani Khumalo and James Coppinger all made returns from injury at Ewood Park while new signing Abdoulaye Meite was thrown straight into starting action.
Dickov said: “The ones that have been out injured and cost us a little bit are starting to come back.
“We should have Paul Keegan back this week,
“Slowly but surely we’re looking as though we’ve got a bit of strength in depth and a bit of experience in there.
“We’re looking like a good team and once the squad looks a bit stronger and we continue to perform like we did in that second half at Blackburn then I know we’ll be more than okay this year.”
Though Dickov is in positive mood about his side’s fortunes, he admits he could not be so glowing following the poor defeat to Stevenage in the FA Cup earlier this month.
He said: “I have a fantastic relationship with my players.
“I don’t like coming out and not backing them but I felt I couldn’t after Stevenage.
“I felt there was a need to make changes.
“At Blackburn we got a reaction from the players that came in and a reaction from the players who came off the bench who I’d left out.
“That’s exactly what you want – genuine competition for places.
“You want a strong squad together in terms of picking the team but the spirit as well.”