TOWN will aim to be more ruthless at both ends of the pitch against Milton Keynes Dons tomorrow (3.00).
That's the pledge of midfield playmaker Tony Carss as Town bid to bounce back from their midweek defeat at the Galpharm Stadium.
Carss - back in Town's starting line-up for the first time since August for the stunning win at Luton last weekend - believes Tuesday's 3-1 reversal against Tranmere will have done Peter Jackson's side more good than harm in the longer term.
"It taught us that if we switch off for even a second or make silly mistakes, we are going to get punished at this level," said Carss.
"The result really hurt the staff and the players, as I'm sure it did the fans, and we are determined to bounce back against MK Dons.
"We have spoken a lot about the goals we've conceded and the manager has stressed how important it is for us to start keeping clean sheets.
"I don't know whether it's the standard in League I or just the way things are going for us at the moment, but we seem to be getting punished for every little mistake at the moment while, at the other end, we are having to work incredibly hard to score ourselves.
"You would always fancy us to score goals because of the attacking talent we've got in the squad and the type of football we play, but we have to start keeping clean sheets as a team.
"It's not just down to the back five and the goalkeeper, it's the responsibility of all the team.
"The more clean sheets we collect, the more points we will collect, so we have to eliminate the mistakes against MK Dons and then be more clinical and ruthless in front of goal ourselves."
After two substitute appearances and two starts, the 28-year-old Carss is feeling fully fit after recovering from knee surgery and is determined to make his mark on the season.
"I'm enjoying being back in the thick of it, I'm fit and strong and, hopefully, the more games I play the better it will go," he explained, noting Danny Schofield is now available after suspension.
"It has been the story of the season so far that every time we've got up to fifth or sixth place we've let ourselves down and dropped to eighth or ninth instead of kicking on.
"Tuesday was another case in point when, despite a very disappointing result, I thought we played some good, enjoyable football and probably deserved to take the bare minimum of a point.
"We are back in that position now where we've slipped a little and we keep putting pressure on ourselves, but there is a lot of confidence and determination in the squad that we are going to put things right.
"We need to get out of the traps early against Milton Keynes and go about the job in the right way. We have to focus on what we do best, cut out the errors which cost us and maybe show just a little more quality in our final ball on attack.
"Ally that to the 110% we always give in terms of effort and commitment and it ought to be good enough to guarantee three points - not just against MK Dons but against anybody in the table."
Town - Senior, Holdsworth, Lloyd, Yates, Clarke, E Sodje, Worthington, Carss, Brandon, Abbott, Mendes, Booth, Brown, Mirfin, Fowler, Schofield.
MK Dons - Martin, Edds, Palmer, Ntimban-Zeh, Lewington, Kamara, Chorley, Herve, Tapp, Small, McLeod, Puncheon, Oyedele, Crooks, Pacquette, Heald.
Referee - Clive Oliver (Northumberland).