London - Undeterred by his last points prediction coming back to bite him, Fernando Alonso has said he expects his misfiring McLaren Formula One team to open their account for the season in Monaco this weekend.
The Spaniard had told reporters before his home race in Barcelona two weeks ago that he was confident McLaren would finish in the points.
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Instead, he retired with a brake problem which the team blamed on a trapped visor tear-off while 2009 champion team mate Jenson Button finished 16th and lapped after wrestling with the 'scary' handling of his car.
"I think we will get points in Monaco," Alonso told Sky Sports ahead of Sunday's showcase race.
"Our simulations (in Barcelona) until the retirement put us in ninth place, so (that) was already the first opportunity to get the points. In Monaco it will be the second.
"From now on we will always be on the limit of the 10th place for the next two or three races. Hopefully after Austria we will be more secure seventh, eighth place I hope. That's the target."
Former champions McLaren have not won a race since 2012 and are enduring their worst start to a season as the new partnership with Honda beds in, but Monaco has rewarded them more than any team over the years.
Alonso won in the principality with Renault in 2006 and McLaren in 2007 while Button did so in 2009 with Brawn. Germany's Nico Rosberg has won the past two editions with Mercedes.
The tight and twisty circuit means McLaren's power disadvantage will be less apparent, with driveability and a driver's skills more important.
"I'm hopeful we can sort out the balance issues we had on my car in the last race, so Monaco should see an improvement," Button said in a team preview of the race.
"After a disappointing race in Barcelona, naturally it's easy to be frustrated when you step out of the car, especially when you feel you deserved more.
"I firmly believe that we're making solid progress, which is why having a difficult race is hard to take."