Shaun Wane struggled to express his disappointment after watching his Wigan side tumble to a crushing 38-20 defeat to Castleford - which left their top-four hopes hanging by a thread.
In their last home game of the season, the Warriors were dominated from the start as the table-topping Tigers charged into a 20-0 half-time lead.
A three-try flurry midway through the second-half briefly revived their hopes but ultimately they had left themselves with too much to do.
The defeat came at a cost with Joe Burgess limping off with a torn hamstring.
Wigan sit fifth in the table and now must win their last game of the season - at Wakefield on Saturday - and hope either Hull FC or St Helens lose their games to claw their way back into a play-offs positions.
Wane said: “It was nothing like a Wigan performance. Even when we scored the tries, they relaxed - Cas’ were way better than us in many departments.
“There was a poor attitude to getting into the grind of the game. Too many individuals had days off, in one of our biggest games. It’s really disappointing.
“I never saw that first-half coming - never, ever. We were way off our standard. We didn’t want to match them physically.
“We coughed up four sets coming out of yardage, and when they were coming out of yardage we gave four penalties away. They were 90-odd per cent and we were 53 per cent out of yardage - you’re never going to beat anyone with those stats, so against a good team you’re not giving yourselves a chance.
“We gassed ourselves and gave ourselves too much to do.
“If we’d played well and got beat, I would have been just disappointed. But after that... I can’t tell you how disappointed I am.
“And now we’re needing favours from other teams.”
Asked whether he could envisage either Saints losing at Salford on Thursday, or Hull being beaten at Castleford 24 hours later, Wane said: “We’ve done this. We’ve got ourselves into this. All we can control, is how we train, how we play at Wakefield - it’s disappointing we’re needing help.”
Winger Burgess is unlikely to play again this year after limping off with a torn hamstring, which would appear to rule him out of World Cup contention.
Several of Wane’s former team-mates were among the 15,706 crowd to commemorate the 30th anniversary on Wigan’s epic win against Manly.
“I’m embarrassed they were there to see that,” said Wane. “The crowd was good - we weren’t as good as the crowd.”
Tigers’ teenager Jake Trueman celebrated his full debut with a first-half hat-trick and Castleford coach Daryl Powell hailed their display as the most ‘controlled’ of the year. He said: “Everyone was outstanding. To be able to do that, it says a lot about us.”
Powell gave little away about what team he may field against Hull FC next Friday night.
Josh Ganson was presented with the Edwards-Johnson trophy as Under-19s player of the year.
The trophy honours academy players Billy-Joe Edwards and Craig Johnson, who were killed in a car accident.
Edwards’ brother, Wigan legend Shaun, and Johnson’s father David presented the award to the England academy hooker at half-time.
Ganson made five first-team appearances this year and played a big role in the U19s’ Grand Final triumph.