MANAGER Danny Searle says bad habits must be broken when his Braintree Town side head to Sutton United tonight.

The Iron make the trip to South London hoping to end a run of five Vanarama National League defeats that have all but killed off any hopes they had of remaining in non-league football's top flight this year.

They now have nine games remaining and are still 14 points away from safety, knowing that they cannot realistically afford to drop any points before the end of the season.

Wherever they end up, though, Searle just wants his players to battle in every game and that means they must do markedly better than they did in a dismal 4-0 defeat by Harrogate Town on Saturday.

The Iron boss felt his players had allowed some poor habits to creep in in recent games and wants them to regain the form they had when beating the likes of Salford and Barnet a couple of weeks ago.

He said: “We have to move on from what happened on Saturday.

“The players have to take some accountability for what happened.

“What they don’t realise is that habits are easy to come by and not so easy to shake and we have got into some bad habits at the moment.

“We have to shake them and they have to work hard, doing the extra things away from the club to make sure that we can eradicate them and we can progress.

“The bottom line is that it comes down to mindset.

“Whether you have lost five in a row or won five in a row, it is down to mindset and you can change that mindset, but they have to be open to doing that and putting in the work.

“We’re still taking it game by game.

“There are targets we can still try to achieve and albeit little targets, they are targets.

“I’ve said to the lads that every setback is another opportunity for a fightback and we are certainly giving ourselves plenty of opportunities for fightbacks."