Central Coast Mariners will keep chasing an A-League finals berth as long as it's a mathematical possibility, according to winger Kwabena Appiah.
The Mariners fought back to level at 2-2 against Melbourne City on Sunday but a red card to goalkeeper Paul Izzo and Bruno Fornaroli's subsequent spot-kick for the visitors saw Central Coast lose 3-2 in front of their home fans.
While the contest entertained the crowd in Gosford, the result did nothing for the Mariners' tilt at finishing in the top six.
Central Coast sit second-from-bottom in the A-League table and five points behind sixth-placed Western Sydney Wanderers with five games remaining, but Appiah reckons the Mariners can still bridge that gap.
"It's hard to take this loss but there's still five games to go, five games to get three points in every single game," he told ABC.
"We still own that top six spot."
The Mariners have a tough run-in to the finals.
Paul Okon's side visit premiers-in-waiting Sydney FC on Friday before a winnable home game against last-placed Adelaide United.
A trip to Brisbane Roar, who sit fourth, will follow on April 2 before Central Coast host fellow finals aspirants Newcastle Jets in the F3 Derby and visit second-placed Melbourne Victory in the final round.
But while results will be critical during those five games, Appiah insisted the Mariners won't give up their possession-based style for something arguably more pragmatic.
"That's our playing style. Sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn't," he said.
"We've got to keep our playing style, otherwise if we don't believe in what we’re doing then there's no reason to be on the park.
"It's a fantastic playing style. I love it and the boys love it and we're going to keep doing it."