(Reuters) - Real Sociedad fans should keep believing in their team even after a 2-1 defeat to Levante which left them further off the pace in La Liga's title race, coach Imanol Alguacil said on Saturday.
Sociedad went ahead through a goal from Alexander Isak but Roger Marti soon levelled for Levante, while Jorge de Frutos struck a late winner for the hosts, leaving Alguacil's side without a win in eight matches in all competitions.
"We are the same team as we were a month ago, that team which made everyone fall in love with them, but we've had some important injuries and our results have suffered, but our energy and enthusiasm has not dropped," Alguacil told reporters.
"We may have not won for eight games but we've competed in a dignified way in every game and in most of them we have deserved more."
A second consecutive league defeat after Wednesday's 2-1 loss at Barcelona left the Basque side in second place, three points behind La Liga leaders Atletico Madrid having played three games more.
They were top of the standings less than a week ago and recently went on a six-game winning streak, but their promising start was tested by injuries to David Silva, Adnan Januzaj and top scorer Mikel Oyarzabal.
They have drawn three and lost twice in their last five league games. They drew their final three Europa League matches but still managed to reach the last 32 of the competition, setting up a tie with Manchester United next year.
"I'd tell the fans to keep believing because we're not far from being the team we were a month ago, even though we are missing some important players and lately we've been struggling for results," added Alguacil.
(Reporting by Richard Martin; Editing by Toby Davis)