Andy Davies has set his players a six-point target ahead of the most important spell of his reign as St Neots Town manager.
The Saints chief - who took temporary charge back in January before being appointed permanently in the summer - is placing huge significance on two crunch Southern League Premier Division home clashes in the coming days.
Saints have been sucked back down into the drop-zone during a spell of three weeks without a league game and must get results when they entertain two teams in close proximity to them in the standings - Hayes & Yeading this Saturday and Cirencester on Tuesday.
Davies’ men were only a point from safety ahead of a set of midweek fixtures last night (Tuesday) and were within three points of the top half of the table.
He said: “December is always a huge month which can really shape a season and matches don’t come a lot bigger than the two we have ahead.
“We have done well against teams higher in the league, but faltered against those in our part of the table. That is something we need to address because six points are a must over the next few days.
“We have games in hand on the vast majority of the teams above us, but we have to turn them into points on the board.
“It was horrible last Saturday seeing the results come in and us sliding back down into the bottom four without playing, but we have to focus on where we believe we can get to rather than the position we are in now.
“It is such a tight league that a couple of results will shoot us up into mid-table and that’s the goal over the next few days.
“We’ve trained well in the past couple of weeks and the mood in the camp is good.
“We’re in a positive frame of mind and can’t wait to get back to business - and we know we’ll have the fans behind us as usual.
“They have been absolutely amazing regardless of whether we win, lose or draw.”
Davies is without defender Tom Ward, wideman Nassim L’Ghoul and striker Sam Mulready for both games due to suspension, but the Saints squad has been boosted by two new arrivals.
Davies moved swiftly to a Dan Gleeson as player-coach after he was axed as manager of Premier Division rivals Cambridge City earlier in the week.
And left-sided player Charlie Day, who can operate in defence or midfield, has made the same switch from second-bottom City. Day has also played National League North football for Histon.
* Saints’ trip to lower-level Aylesbury in the League Challenge Cup second round has now been postponed three times in the space of nine days.
It fell victim to a waterlogged pitch on November 22 before being called off on Tuesday and Thursday of this week due to a frozen pitch.