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Hird still believes he's right man for the job

Hird: 'We stopped playing' James Hird searches for answers after Essendon's 110-point loss to St Kilda
MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA - JULY 5: James Hird, Senior Coach of the Bombers looks on during the 2015 AFL round 14 match between the Essendon Bombers and the St Kilda Saints at Etihad Stadium, Melbourne, Australia on July 5, 2015. (Photo by Adam Trafford/AFL Media)
James Hird's coaching has come under serious question after the huge loss to St Kilda
I still believe I can coach this group. That's my own belief, whether it's other people's belief, we'll see
James Hird

JAMES Hird still believes he is the right man to coach Essendon, despite the team slumping to a fifth straight defeat after a demoralising 110-point loss to St Kilda on Sunday.

And midfielder Dyson Heppell has brushed off suggestions that the team is no longer playing for Hird.

The Bombers have won just four games this season, with Sunday's loss to the Saints their worst performance to date.

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The players lacked effort and intensity, allowing the game to blow out to their biggest ever losing margin to St Kilda.

With the WADA appeal hanging over the Bombers and listless on-field performances becoming more frequent, the pressure is mounting on Hird, whose contract expires at the end of next season.

Despite all this, he remains steadfast in his belief that he is still the best man to coach the Bombers going forward.

"It certainly puts pressure on me, no doubt," Hird admitted after the loss.

"As a coach I think when your team is not performing, you've won four and lost nine, the pressure comes on.

"I still believe I can coach this group. That's my own belief, whether it's other people's belief, we'll see.

"I'm not worried about the pressure that will come on me because it can't be much more than it's been previously. I'm just disappointed for our supporters and players."

Suggestions the team was no longer playing for Hird were quickly shut down after the game, with Heppell throwing his support behind the embattled coach.

"We love Hirdy," Heppell said.

"We love having Hirdy around; we have so much respect for the man. Of course we're playing for the coach. This is about the player. We're all in this together once again. We need to get through this period."

Skipper Jobe Watson said the pressure on his coach was "a reality of the game", but the players needed to take responsibility for their actions on the field.

"The heat comes on everyone at some point," Watson said.

"The disappointing thing from the performance today though, was the effort wasn't there. As players you can't hide from that, and as the captain of the club, I can't hide from that."