SYDNEY, AUSTRALIA - APRIL 01: Suns head coach Rodney Eade walks from the field after giving a three quarter time team talk during the round two AFL match between the Greater Western Sydney Giants and the Gold Coast Suns at Spotless Stadium on April 1, 2017 in Sydney, Australia. (Photo by Mark Metcalfe/Getty Images)

Gold Coast midfielder Michael Barlow says he and the club are right behind coach Rodney Eade and former captain Gary Ablett as the pair have copped early season criticism.

Barlow said while the 102-point loss to GWS on Saturday was embarrassing, he believes putting the blame square on Eade and Ablett is unfair.

“As a player group we are right behind Rocket,” he said.

“Rocket is a strong character, he is a proud Gold Coast Sun. If everyone jumps behind that mindset, we will have a much better output.”

“People are looking for a scapegoat, you really feel for Gary in that respect.”

As a member of the leadership group, Barlow said the way his side performed against GWS was a rude awakening, and called upon his teammates to show some fight for the guernsey this weekend when they host Hawthorn on Sunday.

“Being out there and part of it, it is embarrassing,” Barlow said.

“We had a really good summer and we probably started to believe some of the hype surrounding us.”

“We get to find out who wants to be a Gold Coast Sun,” Barlow said ahead of Sunday’s game.

“We’re going to find out a lot about individuals and this team as a collective in the wake of this criticism.

“You probably hear it in our voices at the moment, how much it’s burning.

“There’s going to be guys that are probably not going to get the opportunity this week on the back of a few bad performances, but the blokes that do, whether they’re coming up or having another crack at it, it’s going to mean something.”