CHARLES Vernam believes City’s current struggles should help toughen their mentality for next season.

The Bantams dropped out of play-off contention after a five-match losing run to leave them with just pride to play for in the final two weekends.

Vernam is eager to reverse the slide on Saturday at home to third-bottom Scunthorpe, whose current form is equally wretched.

But the winger, who admits he has not shown City fans enough of what he is capable of so far, thinks this tough spell can still prove to be a benefit in the future.

“It’s been a difficult run and we’re feeling it as much as the fans,” he said.

“We want to win football matches and to slip from a position where we were within touching distance of the play-offs is really frustrating.

“But having this feeling and the streak we are going through losing five games on the bounce, we are learning about each other and what we need to do in those moments of difficulty.

“Going into next season, we look at this and think to ourselves, ‘we lose one game, we make sure we don’t go on this run of losses’ because that’s the difference between being where we want to be and in a position in mid-table not playing for anything.

“It’s a really important learning curve for us as a group and we will take a lot of knowledge from it going forward.

“It’s a sort of positive from a negative. I think that’s an important way to look at it.”

Vernam was a more influential figure in the last-gasp loss to Salford in midweek but knows he is yet to hit the heights since his deadline-day arrival from League One Burton at the end of January.

He added: “It’s been frustrating. I’ve not been able to perform as consistently as I’ve wanted to in myself.

“It always takes time to adjust to a new style of playing and I’m the first to admit I’ve not been able to show as much as I’ve wanted to in terms of my ability on the ball and creating chances and scoring goals.

“As a forward, that’s what I’m going to be judged on, so it’s something I have taken a long look at and want to improve.

“I think I was more effective in the game on Tuesday night and that’s what I bring to the team.

“It’s an important last couple of games and I want to really try and show that more.

“It’s always a case of learning, even in these difficult spells in your career when things aren’t clicking, and you need to take a step back and focus on improvements.”

City have been accused of taking their foot off the pedal in recent weeks and blowing their chances of grabbing a spot in the top seven.

Vernam, though, is adamant that the slump in fortunes is not down to players subconsciously easing off until the end of the season.

“Everyone feels the hurt and pain when we lose games. If they didn’t then they wouldn’t be here.

“It’s not a case of downing tools and going into the summer break and relaxing. We want to start to build something and don’t want to take our foot off the gas.

“There’s always a focus on the future so we want to start next season like we finish this one. So, it’s important we get two positive results to take into that.

“Tuesday was frustrating but overall it was a performance that we can take a lot of confidence from as a group.

“It showed a lot of grit, desire and going back to the basics that got us the results from the start. It’s a good place to build from again.”