Pilley has called on the community to get behind the club’s bid to climb out of League One’s bottom four, offering 500 free tickets to local fans for today’s vital home clash with AFC Wimbledon.
The chairman had expected a mid-table season at least and said: “We all must pull in the same direction, that is the secret for success. It is not just the football manager that has the responsibility – we all have a responsibility.
"I never expected it to be a season where we're flirting with relegation. We sat down and looked at the squad, and were confident we had enough quality in the squad for at least a halfway finish.
"We knew we had exceptional young players that needed game time. We couldn't be in a situation where James Hill and Jay Matete didn't get game time.
"Injuries have hit us hard and we've lost something like nine games post-90 minutes, which is frustrating. But for that we'd be pushing 50 points, and home and hosed.
"A variety of things have conspired against us but we can't be feeling sorry for ourselves. Right now, the focus has to be on maintaining our divisional status.”
Town are seeking a ninth successive season in League One and have never been relegated under Pilley’s stewardship. "I don't like to go backwards, in business, in life or in football” he added. “I've never done it in football and I don't want to start now.
"If it happens, we've seen plenty of clubs be rejuvenated by going backwards but it is not the plan. I think we can be revitalised by staying in League One.”