FORMER Greater Western Sydney star Brett Deledio believes his ex-teammates have a tendency to play as "individuals".
The Giants' are off to their worst start to a season in six years, and Deledio has called on the club's senior leaders to take on greater responsibility as the team slumped to 3-4 following Saturday's loss to Brisbane.
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"When things start to go bad, they all try to use their own ability to win the game versus trying to do it together," Deledio, who retired last season after three years as a Giant, told ABC Grandstand on Sunday.
"That's where they ultimately fall down ... because it's a bunch of 22 individuals versus a collective team."
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In their four losses this year – all by under 24 points – the Giants have conceded runs of four or more consecutive goals in alarming lapses of concentration.
Ahead of the Giants' must-win clash with Richmond on Friday night, Deledio said coach Leon Cameron, captain Stephen Coniglio and the club's older players needed to be stronger on the rest of the playing group.
"He (Cameron) gives these guys a lot of freedom to play the way they see the game unfold," the 275-game former Tiger and Giant said.
"I think there needs to be a little bit more, I wouldn't say discipline, but structure in terms of, 'Right this is the way we're going to do it, if you don't handball that ball of to someone who's running past, expect to come and sit next to me for a little bit'.
"That needs to come from the senior players as well, Cogs (Coniglio) needs to see that happening. It's not just him, it's Phil (Davis), it's Heath Shaw who's the oldest player out there, it's Shane Mumford."
The Giants have lost the inside 50 count in all seven matches this season to be ranked No.17 in the competition for forward entries.
Cameron highlighted an overuse of handball in the 20-point loss to Brisbane that invited the Lions' manic pressure.
"I think it's just that they're trying to find the perfect play too much, versus backing in guys like (Harry) Himmelberg, 'Jezza' Cameron, 'Jezza' Finlayson, forwards who create a contest and allow their little boys to get to work," Deledio said.
"Their senior players aren't performing at the level they have the last three years. 'Shawry' isn't getting any younger, it's time for young guys to knock on the door and take his spot because he's still holding up his end."