Kolo Toure admits that there is a lot for the City defence to work on following Saturday's draw with Burnley.
The Blues were two goals down before half time but a stirring comeback, helped by the skipper's equaliser, put City within reach of a win that would have ended a run of four consecutive draws.
However Kevin McDonald's leveller with five minutes left shattered those hopes and Kolo was brutally honest in his assessment of the performance.
"We know we dropped two points – we have to improve our defending," he declared. "We need time and work and there’s still a long way to go. The manager has highlighted a few things. We have top-class players, and we have to take responsibility at the back.
As defenders, we need to work like brothers. We feel vulnerable at the moment, which isn’t good. We have to be stronger. When the opposition score three goals like that, it’s difficult to take. It’s killing me.
"We're very, very disappointed because we came back so well in the second half to score three goals. But at the end we left some space at the back again, and that's the second home game where we have not defended well.
"As captain I'll take the responsibility, but we'll all work on it when we are all back in training. It is something we have to address if we are to be a top four team."
The international break means City face a two-week break until their visit to Anfield, and while looking forward to playing for the Ivory Coast in the mean time, Kolo is keen to get back training with the City squad to address what needs to be worked on.
"Having the break is not great, but it could be good for us in that it gives us time to think and analyse everything. We've got a huge game against Liverpool when we come back, and we need show a new face to our game when we play them.
"We have the team to do well there, especially if we play like we did in the second half on Saturday. We'll work really hard, but we need to take responsibility for what's happened, especially at the back."