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Manly captain Daly Cherry-Evans.

Manly captain Daly Cherry-Evans has drawn on tough times as he implored team-mates to stick solid in the wake of Friday night’s 38-12 thrashing by the Dragons.

The Sea Eagles are enduring their worst start to a season since losing their opening four matches in 2009. They face unbeaten Penrith next Thursday night.

Despite the unhappy times, Cherry-Evans refuses to accept that Manly's premiership campaign is already finished.

"We just have to fight for that next week," Cherry-Evans said.

"Once we get our first win all sorts of momentum can get created. So we are one win away from getting out of this. It's that simple."

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Manly bounced back in 2009 to finish fifth and were consistently one of the NRL’s top teams until 2015 when they were in last place until round 17.

The Sea Eagles finished 13th in 2016 and 15th in 2018 before coach Des Hasler returned to the club in 2019.

Asked if this was the lowest point for Manly in his 11 seasons with the club, Cherry-Evans said: "No, there's been some real rough trots over my career. Everything just seems more amplified because it's the present, it's the current moment. It's not ideal, but if I've got to compare, it's not the worst one".

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However, he conceded that some of the younger players might not have experienced the disappointment and scrutiny that comes a poor start to a season.

"I guess that's probably why I might be a bit more optimistic about turning this around than some other people," Cherry-Evans said.

"If you're young and don't know any better, three in a row can be quite daunting but I know our next win can come as quickly as next week and then our season changes.

"I'll make sure to try and get that message really clearly across before this next game. You have to really believe in yourself, your teammates and the processes you're following."

In their three losses to the Roosters, Rabbitohs and Dragons, the Sea Eagles have conceded 110 points and scored just 28.

Numerous handling errors put enormous pressure on their defence against the Dragons.

"We're still finding the balance of our attack so while it definitely looks frantic I really like the fact that we're trying things," Cherry-Evans said.

"We just have to play a style of footy that works for us and after three rounds, and three losses, we probably haven't found that just yet so we do have plenty of work ahead of us in getting the attack to click and matching that up with some real steely defence."

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