Ronnie Moore has pleaded with Hartlepool United supporters to keep faith with misfiring striker Rakish Bingham.
The 21-year-old has scored just one goal in 12 appearances for the club since making last season’s loan spell permanent in the summer.
In the 4-1 defeat to Luton Town at Victoria Park, Bingham missed a hat-full of chances as Pools suffered back-to-back home defeats.
With the scores level at half-time, Pools were well placed to get something from the League Two clash but a defensive horror-show ended any hopes of a win.
And while the defence took the blame for the defeat, Bingham’s ongoing struggles in front of goal is a major concern for Pools.
The former Mansfield Town frontman hasn’t scored since the opening day win over Morecambe.
If you are struggling up front and at the back then that is why we are where we areRONNIE MOORE
But boss Moore has backed the pacy striker to hit the goal trail soon.
“A few were having a pop at Bings, you have to be careful,” said Moore.
“He can be the shining light and people will say how long do you wait if he keeps missing but we don’t have the pace that he has got.
“We have to trust the instinct that he has got.
“Bings kept getting in there, all the time, and the keeper makes saves.
“Sooner or later he’s going to score and we have to take the chance
“Yes, you can only give them so long and then you do have to change it but the offensive part isn’t a worry.
“We are creating and making chances.
“It is the other part at the back that is a worry - head it, kick it, do the right things defensively.
“If you are struggling up front and at the back then that is why we are where we are.
“If we don’t get it right we will be looking over our shoulders.”
Moore decided against taking Bingham off during the second half, despite missing further good chances, with Mark Tyler in the Hatters goal again denying him.
“It is up to Rakish [to regain his form] at the end of the day,” added Moore.
“He isn’t hitting the ball badly, maybe he needs a scuffer.
“It was his pace that caused them problems and got in those positions.
“And that is why he played up top with Billy [Paynter] because we felt with his pace we could get at their defence, which we did, how many times!
“Bings, hand on heart, will be as disappointed as everyone else.
“Do you take him off? What does that do to him?
“If you take him off, you kill him. We tried to stick by him as the next chance could be the one.
“Sooner or later he will score, it is down to him though.
“And while he is going through [this spell], you can’t defend the way we did.
“We need the crowd to stay with him because his pace is a constant threat in this division and his finishing will come.
“His finishing in training on Friday was top drawer.
“It is frustrating for him, me as a manager, the players and the fans because we can’t have that many chances and only score one goal.”