The Irishman told the Journal: "Talk of titles is a difficult one. Earlier in the season we apparently didn't have a defence, we were muppets in the Champions League and people were having a go at certain players.
"Now we beat
"Only three teams finished above us last season. If we finished third this season that would be progression for us and we'd be delighted with that."
And of the much criticised defence O’Brien added: "We like to attack and it can leave us vulnerable at times. When we're away from home we can't go at teams as much as we'd like, which might explain the difference between our home and away form.
"But we have shown we can defend away from home, as the results at Aston Villa and Southampton show. Unfortunately, we've also taken some heavy beatings away from home as well.
"It needs addressing and we're trying to sort it out."