JUSTIN Edinburgh has warned his players that their futures at the club will be in danger if they don't improve their dreadful form in 2014.
The Exiles were arguably the better side at Mansfield on Saturday but were beaten by Anthony Howell's last-gasp header on 89 minutes.
It means County have won only once in their last 11 in 2014 and no team has fewer League Two points since the turn of the year.
But incredibly, despite their horrible run, the Exiles remain only six points off the play-offs, with two games in hand.
However, Edinburgh knows there is no point thinking about a top seven finish in their current predicament and has instead warned his players that he expects to see an improvement, if they want to remain part of the Amber Army.
"We will have the boys in for training today ahead of tomorrow and we have another tough game that we need to try and get something out of," he said.
"We've got to concentrate on getting a run of form together and if we do that, we will see where it can take us, but we aren't talking about the play-offs.
"We've got a squad here now, we are near enough at full strength and people have to make the most of opportunities that come their way.
"The only one who did that on Saturday was Andrew Hughes. He stood up and was counted and they are the kind of performances I am looking for.
"If people want to be here next year.... What I can say is there are plenty of people playing for their spots next season.
"This is a great club, our fans made this sound like this was a home game and if people want to still be here next season, they need to step up their performances."
Edinburgh admits he'd be thrilled to claim victory at Morecambe tomorrow night even if his side don't deserve it.
"It's disappointing to lose the game the way we did, my players came out in the second half and responded really well to being behind, but I can praise them as much as I like, they need to take responsibility for all their dominance and the fact is, we shouldn't be losing to a goal like that. It's frustrating and it isn't good enough, we have to erase that," he said.
"What we don't want is to be creeping in to being a team who should get something out of a game, but don't.
"I'd rather be lucky and I don't think we've had many games like that this season, when we've won it's been because we've been the better team.
"That's frustrating, probably there are five or six games where we've been a good team (the better team) but we haven't won and that's a frustration to me. I'd rather win luckily than lose dominating."
Edinburgh was annoyed by the manner of Saturday's defeat.
"Our goalkeeper hasn't made a save, but we've lost 2-1," he said.
"The players can't let their heads drop and if anyone does, they won't be in the team.
"It was hard to see it coming, after we scored we were by far the better side, but we lacked the quality we needed and couldn't finish them off with the second goal.
"It's hard to take, our goalkeeper probably hasn't had to make in the whole game, but deserving to win means nothing. It's all about results on the pitch and at the moment they aren't going for us."