The Gold Coast may need a miracle to make the NRL finals but Titans coach John Cartwright reckons his mercurial side may not be worthy of a top eight spot anyway.
Just fielding a fit side is tough enough at the moment for the Titans after hooker Matt Srama (shoulder) and lock Ashley Harrison (rib) were rubbed out for Saturday's clash with Manly, with another six reportedly battling injury.
Five-eighth Adam Sezer (knee) will be given until Friday to prove his fitness while injury-riddled forward Nate Myles has put his hand up to play.
No wonder making the top eight was not Cartwright's top priority on Tuesday.
To pull off a finals miracle, the Gold Coast need Brisbane and Wests Tigers to lose then thrash defending champions Manly at Skilled Park this weekend.
"Miracles do happen. It would nearly have to be a miracle for Penrith to get over the Broncos on Friday night," Cartwright said.
"But at least we know where we will stand come Saturday morning before our game.
"If we do happen to need to win by a few points, you might get an entertaining game.
"It's important for a lot of reasons that we finish the year on a high - the way we deserve to finish."
But Cartwright hinted the Gold Coast - which started the year with so much promise with new imports Myles, Jamal Idris and Beau Champion - had not warranted a finals berth.
"We've definitely improved in a lot of areas from last year but the goal is always to play finals footy and if you don't get there it's very disappointing," he said of last year's wooden spooners.
"There will be a lot of soul searching when it is over for us this season.
"We'll let the dust settle first and go through it then.
"But the bottom line is you've got to be consistent over the 26 weeks and we just weren't able to do that."
Cartwright named an 18-strong squad on Tuesday, injecting forwards Ryan James and Brenton Lawrence and utility Dominique Peyroux onto a five-man bench.
Cartwright said Myles should play despite nursing so many injuries "I'd be here forever if I told you all of them."
"It's a tribute to him that he wants to play," he said.
"He's put his team in front of himself, which is typical of Nate.
"He's going to need some surgery in the off-season. He's got a few problems."