Carl Piergianni believes he has been dealt more than his fair share of bad hands already this season.
But the Boston United defender says he’s not the sort to ‘cry’ about what he believes to be incorrect decisions going against him.
Instead, the 22-year-old is determined to put in the extra hours and have the last laugh - by guiding the Pilgrims into the Vanarama North’s top five.
Piergianni is adamant he was hard-done-by after being slapped with a three-match ban following his red card in the 3-2 defeat at his former club Stockport County in September, his late challenge deemed to be dangerous play by referee Tom Nield.
And then there are two penalty decisions given against Piergianni which he still can’t quite come to terms with.
His stoppage-time shoulder-to-shoulder challenge on Barrow’s Andy Cook looked innocuous enough last month, but Shaun Hudson pointed to the penalty spot and the Bluebirds converted to snatch a last-gasp 1-0 victory.
If that wasn’t enough, the New Year’s Day spot kick conceded against Lowestoft, awarded when Erkan Okay’s strike was drilled against the defender’s arm from close range, left another sour taste, especially after Jack Ainsley’s strike claimed a point from 12 yards out.
Those four points dropped could have seen the Pilgrims in a healthier league position.
But Piergianni hopes bad luck only comes in threes, the defender’s response being to knuckle down even more and help the Pilgrims to where he believes they should be in the standings.
“It’s been frustrating for me at times on a personal level, but do you make your own luck?” questioned the former Corby Town defender.
“Maybe I need to work a bit harder and get my fitness levels back to what they can be.
“Then we can crack on, get some clean sheets and get back to my best.
“I’m not one to lie down and cry about it - I’m going to get on with it and give everything again.
“I’ll work hard in the free week, get some fitness in and try to be the best I can.”
With no competitive match this weekend the Pilgrims played out a friendly match against a Nuneaton XI, allowing them to further integrate new signings Grant Roberts, Alex Simmons and Nicky Walker into the squad.
As Boston prepare for Saturday’s trip to Harrogate Town, Piergianni is demanding United add three points to their promotion push.
“We don’t want to draw games anymore, we can’t afford to if we want to get into the play-offs,” Piergianni added, admitting that as a defender he has to play his part in tightening things up at the back.
“We need to win games and, at times, we are conceding goals too easily.
“But the main thing is that we need to go on and win the games.
“Clean sheets will help us though, because we’ve got goals in this side.
“If we can keep clean sheets then we’ll go on and win games.”
A fantastic run of 10 straight league wins have seen Tamworth transform their season, the Lambs pulling themselves out of a relegation battle to become serious promotion contenders in recent weeks.
And after witnessing United draw six of their previous 12 matches, Piergianni is calling on the Pilgrims to take inspiration from Tamworth, convert stalemates into victories and assert themselves in the play-off places.
He added: “We’ve shown that we’ve got a great squad. And we’ve had new additions coming in too, so we’ve got strength in depth,” Piergianni added.
“There’s nothing stopping us getting up there, we’ve seen Tamworth do it recently and shoot themselves up into the play-offs.
“There’s no reason why we can’t crack on and have a good season.”