Hartlepool United manager Paul Murray says his side lacked care with the ball in Saturday's 1-0 League Two defeat by Southend United.
Pools were undone by a second-half goal by David Worrall at Roots Hall, a result that leaves them bottom of the Football League on goal difference.
"The spirit, effort and work rate was there," Murray told BBC Tees.
"I want more on the ball, we needed to stand up and be counted. We gave it away cheaply eight or nine times."
Murray, who was appointed last month, continued: "We need someone to get on the ball and make it their day today - pass the ball, move it and take care of it."
Three home games follow for Hartlepool, starting against York City on Saturday.
"We have to make Victoria Park a fortress," Murray added. "(As a club) we'll be working on it and we've got to get a result at home against York. It's a six-pointer, even now in November."