Dave Jones urged Sheffield Wednesday fans to stick with his players after they were booed off following a 2-0 home defeat to high-flying Leicester, which saw the Owls slip into the npower Championship relegation zone.
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After a promising start to life back in the second tier, Wednesday have now won just two of their last 15 Championship games and they were outclassed by promotion-hopefuls Leicester.
Ben Marshall enjoyed a successful loan spell with the South Yorkshire club last season, but the winger showed no room for sentiment as he set up Danny Drinkwater's first goal of the season in the first half and scored a goal of his own after the break with a measured finish.
Victory for Leicester, who could have won more by a more emphatic margin, moved them up to third and consigned Wednesday to a fourth consecutive defeat.
Owls fans voiced their disapproval at the final whistle and although Jones felt his side were naive, he insists it is not all doom and gloom.
The former Cardiff boss said: "That is the first time we've been outplayed and outfought. When things aren't going so well you have to stick together and dig in but we didn't do that.
"We made so many basic errors. For the first goal they were saying it should have been a foul (on Jay Bothroyd) but it doesn't matter if it's a foul or not, we went chasing the ball and they played a simple one-two and scored.
"We are a little bit naive in some of the things that we do and we haven't got many talkers. But it's no good getting too downhearted, last week (at Nottingham Forest) it was completely different.
"They are an established side, their passing and movement was good and we didn't get going but when that happens you have to dig in. Too many players weren't on their game.
"We've got to stick together, we always knew it was going to be difficult at this level. But I thought the fans stuck with the team and they've got to do that."
Marshall was applauded off by both sets of supporters when he was substituted late in the game and Foxes boss Nigel Pearson, who is held in even higher regard at Hillsborough after seven years at the club in his playing days, was impressed with the winger's performance.
He said: "It was good for him to come back. He enjoyed his time at Wednesday and we're very pleased to have him with us. I think it showed the quality that he's got."
Pearson felt his side were worthy winners and backed Jones to turn things around at Hillsborough.
He said: "In this league the result is always more important. We took a bit of time to get our game going today but I thought the players were very professional with the way they went about it and for the large part I felt we controlled the game.
"I think when you play against sides who have had a bit of a difficult time the first goal is always very important and for us to go in at half-time with a lead was very, very important today. I don't think Wednesday have recovered too many times from a losing position this season.
"The expectation this year, I think, was for them to do a little bit better than they had, but Dave is a very experienced manager and I'm sure they'll pull it round. For this season for them I think it's about trying to consolidate after last year's promotion."