ARGYLE will spend a lot of time on the road for the rest of December, starting with their trip to Chesterfield on Saturday.
Three of their four games in League Two between now and the end of the month will be away from Home Park.
Argyle will also play Oxford United, currently the division leaders by a point from Chesterfield, at the Kassam Stadium on December 26.
Then, three days later, the Pilgrims will be in south London to take on AFC Wimbledon for their final fixture of 2013.
In between those away games, Argyle will play Bury at Home Park next Saturday.
Depending on the outcome of those four matches, the Pilgrims will either enter the New Year on a high, aiming for the play-offs, or be more concerned about the steering clear of the relegation positions.
It promises to be a pivotal few weeks which could shape the rest of Argyle’s season.
Argyle have won two and lost five of their nine away league games this term, with their victories coming against Cheltenham Town (3-1) in August and Mansfield Town (1-0) in October.
Manager John Sheridan is not daunted by the prospect of away games against Chesterfield, Oxford and Wimbledon.
He told Herald Sport: “On paper, we have got a tough run of games, just by names.
“But we would have tough games if we were playing Accrington, York and Northampton.
“I have said it before, and I will say it again, I don’t think there is a lot of difference between any of the teams in the league.”
Sheridan used third-placed Southend United as an example to back up his point about the competitiveness of the division.
He said: “They started the season well and then lost four on the spin. He (manager Phil Brown) was getting a bit of stick, and now they are flying.
“You have got to stick to your guns and stick to your principles, and try to get the best out of your players.
“If you do that, hopefully your luck will change and you will get results. If it doesn’t, at least you have done what you think is right.”
Sheridan added: “Those games (away to Chesterfield, Oxford and Wimbledon) are tough on paper, but if we were playing at Accrington it would be very tough.
“Listen, I think we can beat anyone on our day if we perform. That’s what I try to instil in the players.”
Argyle will travel to Chesterfield with goalkeeper Jake Cole and defender Maxime Blanchard as part of their squad.
Both had to be substituted in the second half of the 3-1 win against Welling United in the FA Cup second round last Saturday because of injuries.
However, the pair took part in training on Thursday morning and will be available for the game at the Proact Stadium.
On-loan Bury attacker Tope Obadeyi is still sidelined, though, by a hamstring injury he suffered in the 1-0 home defeat by Burton Albion on November 30.
Sheridan said: “He’s not far away (from a return to action) but I think this game has come a little bit too early for him.
“He’s a bit like a 100 metres sprinter and quick players do suffer from hamstring injuries sometimes. He has responded to treatment well and is jogging and running at the moment.”
Obadeyi will not be allowed to play for Argyle against Bury when his parent club visit Home Park next weekend.