Melbourne Victory forward Andrew Nabbout says Saturday's A-League clash with Wellington Phoenix is an opportunity for the club to "silence the critics".
Victory have won just two of nine games, with the midfield in particular attracting criticism after some teething problems.
Nabbout said Victory had taken time to gel after an off-season of change and he didn't have an issue with his midfield's output.
"We're strong as a group together and obviously the results haven't been going our way and that's what causes people to kind of speculate," Nabbout said.
"But for me it's no issue - we work on it at training, we're good at it and we'll try and turn it around against Wellington and silence the critics, I guess."
Victory will play Phoenix on Saturday then back up with the Melbourne derby a week later.
And with just three points separating fifth and 11th place, the two games are a chance to gain ground before their round 12 bye.
"These two games are probably the most important for us in the season - to get maximum points from these two will really give us a boost going into next year," Nabbout said.
Nabbout emphasised Victory's support for coach Marco Kurz and said it was on the players to start burying chances in front of goal.
"He's a really good manager, obviously we're all behind him, we're all behind his philosophy and that hasn't changed since day one," Nabbout said.
"We're all strong together and we believe in what he believes in and ... he is good at shielding it - in the media, taking it on himself.
"But at the end of the day, we have to take responsibility as well on the pitch and, there's only so much that the coaches can give us and it's up to us now to take, that responsibility in finishing chances and not conceding those goals."