Bolton boss Owen Coyle would be really concerned about his team's start to the season if they were playing well and still losing games.
The Trotters were beaten 2-0 at home by Sunderland on Saturday, their seventh defeat in nine Barclays Premier League fixtures so far this term. Coyle readily acknowledges that performances have not been good enough, but feels the fact there is such room for improvement is reason to be optimistic about Wanderers' prospects of turning their form around.
"I sat, and when I thought about it - it's not a team or group of players that are playing out of their skin and not getting results," Coyle said.
"There is so much more to come from them, so in my mind, that tells us that when we pick it up and bring it all together, we will pick those points up and go on.
"This is not a team that is at its' maximum and still not winning games."
Coyle admits some of his players' confidence might be suffering, but he remains as upbeat as ever and wants the mood within the camp to be the same.
"I am very confident," said the Scot. "I am certainly confident that we have good players and a good team. I also certainly know that I am a better manager today than I have ever been.
"Yes, there are trials and tribulations, but that is the nature of football. If you thought it was going to be smooth, then you know you are in the wrong game.
"You are always going to be tested and what you have to do is stand up and be counted.
"Confidence might have taken a dip with one or two of the players, but it is up to them now to come through that and show their character and quality - and not be worrying about making mistakes."