Frustrated five-eighth Kieran Foran says Manly know what needs fixing – which makes their inability to do so in 2021 all the more frustrating.
A tendency to start poorly has consistently cruelled Manly's hopes in their 0-4 start to the year and despite knowing the importance of a good opening against ladder-leaders Penrith, they coughed up the ball five times in their first 10 sets on the way to an early 22-0 deficit.
Foran described fullback Tom Trbojevic as a "special footballer" but cautioned against expecting the No.1 to be a panacea for Manly's current woes even if he returned from injury next Friday against the Warriors.
"It's pretty tough. Off the back of three losses, we spoke about everything we wanted to improve on and things we wanted to change," Foran said.
"We knew we were coming up against a very good side but we were optimistic and definitely thought we would come here and challenge them on our home ground. We did anything but that to be honest.
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"When you're low on confidence like we are because you're not winning games, you've got to start well and we haven't been able to start our games well.
"There's been a common theme in most of our games, we're not completing our first seven or eight sets, we're at 40 or 50% completions early on.
"That's probably the most disappointing thing, especially because we spoke about it throughout the week – we just didn't do it."
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He lamented the fact that avoiding early errors should be a fundamentally easy fix, but was not proving to be the case.
"We're aware of it, we know where we're going wrong and doing everything we can to correct it throughout the week then probably because we are lacking confidence and belief we get out there and we knew we wanted to complete and we didn't complete," he said.
"We've just got to be prepared to do whatever we can to make those changes.
"You would think it would be an easy thing to fix. We're professional footballers, first-grade footballers and we're aware of what we need to change.
"Being low on confidence and things not going to plan straight away, we tend to drop our heads pretty quickly at the moment.
"We don't have time to mope around and feel sorry for ourselves, we've got to get on with the job and fix what needs to be fixed. We've got to find a way to win, it's as simple as that.
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"We can't keep turning up and putting in performances like that. This club's better than that."
Foran said he "certainly didn't see our season starting like this".
"We put in a hell of a lot of work over the pre-season and trained really well so to be 0-4 is a pretty hard one to take."
Sea Eagles coach Des Hasler was not sure if Trbojevic would be back to face the Warriors as he nears a return from a hamstring concern. Foran has his fingers crossed.
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"There's not many players like Tommy Turbo; I don't want to heap too much pressure on him but he's a very special player and I know he'll bring so much to this footy team," Foran said.
"But he's also not going to fix 42 points which is what we've been leaking.
"He'll certainly help our attack and he's a great communicator out there, he sees things before they happen. We can't wait to have him back.
"We can't rely solely on Tommy to pull us out of this hole, we've got 17 blokes in there that have got to take a look at themselves and we've got to find a way to get better."