Nyron Nosworthy says Sunderland need to toughen up if they are to maintain their targets this season.
After a promising start under Steve Bruce, the Black Cats now find themselves slipping down the table in England's top flight.
Saturday's draw with Everton leaves them without a win in six games ahead of a tricky trip to Blackburn.
To make matters worse, their away record is shocking, with just one win out of a possible nine on the road so far this term.
Nosworthy, who figured in the clash with Everton, where the Black Cats once again conceded a late equaliser, could find himself thrust into the squad on Monday.
He claims the whole team are to blame for the club's current dip in form and admits the players need to pull together and be a much tighter outfit if they are to achieve their goals this season.
"It's a bit of both, it's being ruthless in front of goal and defending as a team, as a whole," said Nosworthy.
"You can't always rely on the boys up front to be putting away loads of goals to ease the pressure on us.
"Sometimes, we have to take a 1-0, whether it be home or away and, if it gets ugly, just make it ugly as long as we get the result we need, which is three points."
Bruce knows full well the challenge his side face at Ewood Park, but he remains hopeful his team can regain the winning thread.
"The Premier League, in my experience of it, whoever you go to on their own ground, you have to go to do very well, and it will be no different at Blackburn on Monday," he said.
"But we have to start somewhere and I am convinced we can be better."