FIRST-YEAR Adelaide coach Matthew Nicks has no problem with the hailstorm of opinions about his club and says the Crows must get better.
Nicks was brutally honest after Adelaide's horror 75-point hiding from the Power in Showdown 48 on Saturday night, describing the performance as "embarrassing" and "bruise-free".
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There's been non-stop commentary since about how the rebuilding Crows are tracking.
More fuel was poured on the fire on Wednesday, when club director Mark Ricciuto went on radio to address individual players who had left the club.
"It's been a challenging week. Coming off a performance that's not to the level we need it to be, it's confronting for some to go back and look at the detail of why," Nicks said.
"A lot of it we knew straight after the game, and we'll just now go to work and (this) is our first real session where we get the group together as a whole and we'll have a good hit-out.
"We'll continue to go to work – we know we've got to get better – and that's really our focus at this point."
In some good news, Nicks was confident captain Rory Sloane (corked thigh) and defender Jake Kelly (concussion) would be fit to face last-start winner Gold Coast at Metricon Stadium on Sunday.
Kelly has one more concussion test to pass on Thursday.
"At this point, (Sloane) will do limited training today from a contact point of view but he's progressing really well and because it's an eight-day break, we're pretty confident he'll get up," Nicks said.
"We've got until Sunday, so for 'Sloaney' to have eight days, that was a bonus for us. He's progressing really well and today will be more management than anything."
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The Suns' upset victory over West Coast on Saturday night impressed Nicks, who is welcoming the "huge challenge" they will present.
It will also serve as an interesting precursor of what we can expect from both this year, given both were widely tipped in the pre-season to finish in the bottom four.
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One Gold Coast player who caught Nicks' attention was NAB AFL Rising Star nominee Matt Rowell, last year's No.1 draft pick.
"He's a fantastic player. To come in his first year as he has and perform; he was one of the best players in the competition at the weekend," he said.
"We'll talk to our young guys and even some of our senior mids about the best way to go about preventing him doing it again."
Nicks was hopeful the upcoming period staying in a Gold Coast resort and playing multiple games in Queensland could produce some positives.
"We're actually looking forward to it," he said.
"We've got a really good young group of kids who we'll take up there and will enjoy being around each other.
"It'll be interesting, and for a week or so it'll be quite exciting. I think the challenge will come a few weeks in, two or three weeks – if we're up there for that long.
"Actually being in a hotel, it's a different environment to being able to go home … (but) I'm hoping our group really embraces it and enjoys it up there."