TOM ROCKLIFF has thrown his support behind under-siege coach Justin Leppitsch, but says it's time the Brisbane Lions stop making excuses and start performing.
Leppitsch has come under the microscope in recent weeks with the Lions plummeting to 1-10, but Rockliff says the playing group could not be any tighter.
They play fellow cellar dwellers Fremantle at the Gabba on Saturday in what the captain agreed was a must-win.
While saying it was understandable Leppitsch had come under scrutiny with his team's poor record, Rockliff said he had full faith in the direction of the club.
"The playing group has full support behind Leppa and Leppa has full faith in the playing group," he said.
"It's important we continue to work as a unit and as a footy club and I'm sure the performances will start to come.
"The team has full faith in the game-plan and the way we play. The most important thing is we stay consistent.
"I think we've probably made a few too many excuses for ourselves in the past.
"We know we've got 11 games to go in the season and we're looking to have some wins in the back half of the year.
"The playing group is really strong and tight and we've continued to commit to each other and had honest conversations week in and week out."
While not wanting to put a figure on how many wins the Lions were chasing in the remainder of the year, Rockliff said they had to start showing consistency.
Leppitsch has won just 12 of his 55 games in charge and is contracted until the end of 2017.
Rockliff said with so much list turnover since Leppitsch arrived – just 13 players remain since he took over after the 2013 season – things were going to take time.
"We all feel the pressure," he said.
"I know it gets harder and people think you're just selling a message, but we're confident in the direction we're taking.
"It's going to be a longer period for us. It's not going to turn around in a week or two; it's going to be a long-term build.
"I think when you've won one game, it's hard to put a pass mark on how many you want to win in the back half.
"We don't want to limit ourselves and we don't want to set our expectations too high.
"It's (Fremantle) a good opportunity for us and we know if we start well on our home deck, our fans and members continue to turn up and can get us over the line."