Chris Hargreaves told FL72-Preview that Torquay would not be fighting for their Football League lives if he had been managing them from the start of the campaign.
Hargreaves succeeded Alan Knill as Plainmoor boss in January and is battling to keep the club he used to play for in League Two, with the Gulls bottom of the table and five points from safety.
The 41-year-old says he is refraining from looking at the standings in the basement division as he aims to extend Torquay's four-season stint in the Football League - and he also gave an insight into his future plans for the Devon outfit.
"If I was here at the start I have no doubt in my mind that we would have had a successful season," said Hargreaves, who made 105 league appearances for Torquay between 2007-2010.
"You can implement your plans, and get a squad of players in that you believe in and who believe in you [if you are managing in pre-season].
"I don't look at all the maths and permutations like I did as a player because it drives you mad, and I haven't looked at the table since I took over as I am focussed on winning games.
"In the short term my job is about putting my nails on the wall and not sliding down it too far as it would hurt me and my pride immeasurably for us to lose our League status.
"But a major part in the long term is to produce good sessions and good footballers for Torquay, good vibrant young players that can go on and do great things."
To hear more from Hargreaves, including why he will be managing the Gulls next season regardless of what division they are in, hit the video at the top of the screen.