be under the cosh

be under the cosh

To be contending with a difficult or stressful situation; to experience pressure or difficulty. Primarily heard in UK. Local businesses have been increasingly under the cosh by the austerity measures imposed by the government after the economic crash. Manchester United has really been under the cosh in this second half. I don't think they've left their own side of the pitch more than a handful of times.
See also: cosh
References in periodicals archive ?
In all likelihood, we will be under the cosh in both games.
We may need that more on Wednesday with our defence expected to be under the cosh.
Said Reid: "If you don't win games at a big club you are going to be under the cosh, but if you can't handle it, you shouldn't be here.