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'One step forward, two steps back' for Bolton's Blues

We'll deservedly get criticism Brendon Bolton says 'we've seen the worst side of Carlton' today and he understands outside pressure will continue to mount

EMBATTLED coach Brendon Bolton has urged Carlton fans not to treat Sunday's devastating loss to the Giants in isolation and to judge his side on their performances from the opening nine rounds of the season.

The Blues fell to a disappointing 93-point loss to the Giants in Sydney on Sunday evening and find themselves a game and percentage behind North Melbourne on the bottom of the AFL ladder.

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While Bolton was clearly frustrated with his side's performance against the Giants, he implored the nay-sayers to look at the Blues' efforts throughout the season so far and not focus on the poor performance in Sydney.

"It's kind of like one step forward, two steps back at the moment," Bolton said after the loss.

"Over the course of the year ... you can see there is seven (games) where we have been real competitive and showed that's the football that we can produce.

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"And you have seen two (games) where you have seen the worst of Carlton.

"Today the first quarter set the tone and we failed to respond enough after quarter-time."

The loss was Bolton's fourth heaviest since he got the top job at Carlton in 2016 and means the under-fire coach has just 16 wins from 75 matches at the helm of the Blues.

Bolton knows his position will continue to be closely scrutinised with every heavy loss the Blues suffer, but he remains defiant in helping the club return to their glory days of years gone by.

"I understand the business as I have been in it for a little while," Bolton said.

"You have seen the worst side of Carlton and you have seen some of the better side with our efforts in the last few weeks.

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"Our job is about being consistent and when you don't external pressure comes.

"We as a group are really united about our direction going forward and my job is ensuring we talk about how we are going to improve and I can’t let the outside infiltrate.

"We know we will get some criticism for this game and deservedly so, but that can't blur what we are doing and how we go about it.

"That's my job as a leader and our club has a united front and needs to continue to do that."

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Inspirational skipper Patrick Cripps was well below his best against the Giants, with in-form tagger Matt de Boer restricting the superstar to just 12 disposals.

Bolton said the Blues failed to provide Cripps with much help to shake the de Boer tag and noted the inconsistent performances of some of his leadership group through the first nine rounds.

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"I don't really want to look at our leadership in isolation of the two poorer games," Bolton said.

"I would like to look at it over the journey of the nine and there has been some good leadership and some inconsistent.

"We have got to come better at it, over quarters and particularly early when we are challenged."

Former skipper Marc Murphy hurt his ribs against the Giants and is in doubt for the Blues clash against the Saints next week, but there was some good news on the injury front with veteran defender Kade Simpson likely return for the Marvel Stadium contest.