Skipper Lee Mansell urges Torquay United team-mates to be more consistent
Tenth place, a point off the League Two play-offs and only four away from the automatic promotion places, is not a bad start by most standards, but there is a feeling in the Torquay United camp that Martin Ling's Gulls have edged themselves into contention without really moving into top gear yet.
Sure, centre-forward Rene Howe has gone off like the proverbial house on fire, and United have hinted on several occasions they are capable of producing the sort of form they will need to match or improve on last season's near-miss.
But even skipper Lee Mansell says: "It's all about consistency when you get down to it.
"We've produced bits and pieces, spells of 45 minutes when we've played well, but we haven't really seen it through to 90 minutes yet.
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"We always seem to have a ten-15 minute period when we seem to invite things onto us.
"We played Stoke in pre-season and had no trouble moving the ball around at their pace, and it was the same against Yeovil from League One on Tuesday night – they passed the ball with a bit more pace that you get most weeks in League Two, and we matched them.
"It's when we come up against those teams who basically cut out midfield and hit the ball long – the old bish-bash stuff – that we sometimes have trouble imposing our own game on them.
"The gaffer has told us a few times already that we must have that little bit of belief in our ability and confidence.
"But in the last couple of games, it's started to come.
"I think we had about 25 attempts at goal against Accrington last Saturday, and we had plenty against Yeovil this week.
"If you get 20 attempts, then you should in theory win the game, barring some miraculous goalkeeping or woeful finishing.
"Last season it took us until this time of year to get used to the shape and form of the team, and we have had some changes to get used to this season. We do believe that we are in a better shape than we were this time last year.
"And we do think that our best is yet to come."
A third of the season will be over by the time United finish against Morecambe at Plainmoor next Saturday, so today's trip to Bristol Rovers, Tuesday's visit of leaders Gillingham and that Morecambe match represent the sort of spell that could see Ling's men establish themselves as serious promotion contenders or hesitate in mid-table