Danny Wilson is convinced Sheffield United remain in prime position to strike out for automatic promotion and that there is power to add to their showing so far.
The current league run of three wins in 10 games - and four defeats - might tell a different story.
But the Blades remain a handy fifth in the table, within six points of the top two and with a run of very tough fixtures behind them.
And Wilson is shining a light through the gloom of financial projections that suggest United must look to sell at least one top player in January. He kept most of his squad intact during the last window and clearly, from his perspective, can see the value of a repeat.
It is worth recalling new chief executive Julian Winter’s declaration in the Telegraph two months ago when he said the team’s position going into 2012 would have a “huge” bearing on transfer policy. So the results between now and then could prove crucial to the promotion objective.
Wilson believes he is starting to see signs of a better balance from his team as he seeks a more authoritative stamp on their work at Bramall Lane where Carlisle visit on Saturday.
“I don’t think we’ve seen the best of us yet,” he told the Telegraph.
“We have seen it in flashes but I think we will get it more consistently. We are still on the shirt-tails of other teams and there is a lot of time to pull them back.
“So I’m not concerned because I believe we are bang in the area where we need to be.” Last Saturday’s reassertive performance in dismissing Oxford from the FA Cup might have seemed a routine exercise on the day. But Wilson believes the manner of that 3-0 victory could prove both timely and significant.
He decided to harness Nick Montgomery with Michael Doyle in centre midfield in a bid to provide a sounder base. They are players seen as arguably too similar as anchormen to be ideal partners.
But, in deploying them in preference to the more creative Kevin McDonald, Wilson made a statement about the team’s general approach and their vulnerability.
“With all due respect to Kevin, he is a decent passer - but there are times when you have to be solid, added the Blades boss. “It is the midfield players who screen the back four. It’s a key area.
“We know we will score but we can’t concede as we have been doing. The balance has to be right - and it was right against Oxford.
“We also passed the ball well, as well as we have done this season in my opinion. The majority of them will have the chance to prove their worth again on Saturday.
“The performance was very important to me - it’s the other side of the game I’ve been concerned about.
“The way we played as a whole bodes well and we can go in with a bit of confidence against Carlisle.
“We needed a clean sheet and any team that wants to be successful has got to have a decent home record.”