Gold Coast coach Stuart Dew admits he's feeling the heat as the Suns look to arrest their AFL slide in a defining clash with North Melbourne next weekend.
The Suns (4-9) were well off the pace in a 50-point loss to Port Adelaide on the Gold Coast on Saturday, conceding seven straight goals to kill the contest off before halftime.
Injury to captain David Swallow (head knock) and Lachie Weller (hamstring) added further headaches for Dew and a side that has now managed just three wins from 40 games in the second half of seasons since 2017.
The 12.9 (81) to 4.7 (31) saw them narrowly overcome their club-record low mark of 20 points set in 2017, but wasn't an improvement on last week's poor showing against Fremantle.
The loss was their fifth in six games since back-to-back wins over Sydney and Collingwood looked to have set them on the path to a maiden finals campaign.
Instead, they're 16th and three wins outside the eight with nine rounds remaining ahead of a meeting with the improving Kangaroos in Hobart.
"If the club's under the pump, then, of course, I'm under the pump," Dew said.
"But to be fair, that's every week; I don't think it fluctuates as much as it does externally. For me, it's at a healthy level.
"It's (the North Melbourne clash) a great challenge for us, we'll have both skippers out but we're looking for others to step up, step in."
He said "at different times in instances and contests it can look a little bit like men v boys" but said the fact 10 of Port's 12 goals came from intercepts should give them hope.
"We're in control of more of our scores against than perhaps what we believe," he said.
"We can control the game a lot more than what we are."
Australian Associated Press