Lee Sinnott is convinced the only thing stopping Altrincham mounting a push for promotion is a bout of travel sickness.
Altrincham were dumped out of the FA Trophy by Evo-Stik Premier FC United on Sunday, prompting chairman Grahame Rowley to issue a plea to supporters not to criticise Sinnott and his players.
The Robins have picked up just five points on their Conference North travels this season compared to six wins from nine games at Moss Lane.
And despite the disappointment at seeing the road to Wembley blocked by FC United, Sinnott believes a change of fortune on the road could see Altrincham challenge the league leaders in the new year.
"We’ve been together for five months and we’re looking to build something," said Sinnott, who replaced Ken McKenna in the summer.
"It takes time and it’s an on-going process.
"We’ve got 25 points in the league and we’re six points off the play-offs with a game in hand. Our away form just needs rectifying.
"You get the sense that people think there’s a little bit of doom and gloom. Form in this league can change very, very quickly. We know where we need to improve and things are going on behind the scenes to bring new people to the club.
"I’ve said to the players, we’ve just got to keep our heads down and work our way through it. It’ll make them better players for later in their careers. In the meantime, we’ve just got to keep our heads down and graft."
Sinnott was adamant Altrincham didn’t deserve to lose after watching FC United progress into the first round of the FA Trophy with a 2-1 win at Gigg Lane.
Carlos Roca’s fantastic 20-yard strike was cancelled out by Jack Redshaw’s second-half header before Mike Norton won it for United.
"I’m not the type of person who thinks, because FC are a league below us, we can just come here and do what we want to do for 90 minutes," said Sinnott, who takes his team to FC Halifax on Saturday.
"If you look at the balance of play, of course we should still be in the hat. But this is cup football and sometimes you don’t get what you deserve."