Sheffield Wednesday's surprising ambitions for the season according to Barry Bannan
Some people may scoff given their recent form but there remains belief in the Sheffield Wednesday squad that the play-offs can be a genuine target this season.
A much-improved display in drawing 3-3 at Birmingham City on Saturday lifted some of the gloom that has descended over S6 of late but the Owls remain 11 points and six places away from pushing themselves into promotion contention.
Even with that challenging deficit, Bannan, who scored one of the goals in that entertaining encounter at St. Andrew's, says the team are not giving up hope and cites the inconsistency of others ahead of them as reason to be hopeful.
"I actually do," said the Scot when asked if he thinks a fight for play-off place is still on.
"A lot of the boys do as well.
"I know people on the outside will be saying 'no way'. That's good because if you can put a run together... I remember when we got to the semi-finals against Huddersfield, we put a run together, we sneaked in the back door.
"The same with Steve Bruce last year, we nearly got in, we lost to Villa which killed us a bit. There's still a lot of games left.
"You probably have to win seven, eight, nine games now which we are capable of. We will see how it is. It won't be for the lack of trying. We will see where it gets us.”
Bannan added: "The good thing about this season is, everyone is falling in and out of it. Even though you are losing games, other teams are losing games. You come of the pitch and look at the results and you think 'that's not too bad'. We need to start doing it now because the games are running out.
"These last games are massive."
The 30-year-old said belief and encouragement can be taken as a result of the lift they can get from taking a point from the in-form Blues.
Wednesday had come from behind twice to then take the lead through Jacob Murphy – who had earlier scored an own goal – but the Owls were undone by Scott Hogan’s injury time equaliser which denied Wednesday a victory that few would have really begrudged them, such was their rise in performance levels compared to previous matches.
"It's a horrible one to take but at the same time we can take a lot from it," he said. "We should have won.
"This is a tough place to come so it's a little, small confidence boost for the rest of the games coming. You know with this league anything can happen.
"Even today, teams that were above us have dropped points so if we can just go on a run, it's not over yet.
"We are capable of putting four or five wins together. It's alright us saying that, we have to go out and do it but if we can do that, let's see what happens."