NO matter where you look at Wanderers right now, patience is running thin.

Experienced head Nigel Reo-Coker snapped at Swansea last week, disillusioned with the team’s under-performing, while we need no reminder that goodwill levels among the Whites fans are also running dangerously low.

And the strain was there to see on Owen Coyle’s face at the weekly press conference yesterday, as every point made with furrowed brow suggested a man growing increasingly irritated by his side’s dreadful start to the season.

Whereas the Wanderers boss might have expected an orderly queue forming at his door at this time of the week, with fringe players anxious to know why they are not part of his first team plans, he has no such selection dillema heading into Sunday’s game with Stoke.

Even with long-term absentees Chung-Yong Lee, Stuart Holden, Sam Ricketts and Tyrone Mears, Coyle entered into this season with a squad boasting more competiton-per-place than at any other point in his reign.

But 10 games into the campaign, there seems precious little pressure from outside a first 11 who are hardly setting the world alight themselves.

The likes of Ivan Klasnic, Mark Davies, Gretar Steinsson, Tuncay and Fabrice Muamba have bobbed in and out of the team, summing up the inconsistency Coyle is fighting hard to banish.

Such a task could spoil anyone’s mood, so perhaps it was no surprise when the manager’s usual cheery demeanour was conspicuous by its absence at Euxton.

“If you play well you stay in the team. I've shown that for two years,” he said.

“They (the players) couldn't be knocking on my door saying they have been playing well, could they?

“As I have said before, I don't put players out of the team, performances put them out of the team.

“Whether one or two are fragile with confidence, I don't know. But when you get a chance you have got to show your quality.

“As a group they have been unfortunate regarding some of the controllables that have gone against them in terms of injuries or decisions. For example, it would be nice to finish a game with 11 men.

“But there’s no point feeling sorry for yourself or looking back.”

Reo-Coker’s show of annoyance at the Liberty Stadium has been roundly praised by those doubting the spirit within the dressing room.

And Coyle is happy for his players to take their own lead if it means snapping themselves out of their current malaise.

“I can understand that the players are upset, because they will feel they haven’t got to the level they are capable of,” he said.

“If you have played to your maximum and someone is better than you, then you’ll always accept it and sleep well.

“But what leaves a bad taste in your mouth is when you know you have under-performed.

“Last week there was a certain amount of frustration involved. But it’s a passionate game.

“I love people with passion and players who want to be the best they can be. Yes, they are hurting, we all are. But that’s the nature of football. It doesn’t run smooth.

“To pick up points you need big players standing up and showing their quality and delivering a big performance.

“The onus is on us as a group to get to our maximum. We’ve done that but not often enough.”