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Coneys Knee

Case for the defence

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There isn''t one. I just watched yesterday''s goals for the first time and it was like Groundhog Day.

We''ve been so soft at the back for so long that I now find that instead of trying to justify keeping some defenders with reasons such as "he''s alright when he''s got someone decent along side him", I now feel like I would like to see the back of all those that have played in our defence in whatever capacity in however many games.

Without exception I honestly believe we are that horrific at defending that only a complete cull would enable us to be rid of any mental baggage that is having an impact.

Yesterday''s goals were that bad it would have been funny if it wasn''t my team and if I hadn''t seen that shambles week in week out for however many years. Same mistakes, no evidence of learning from them I''m afraid.

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Agree. Get rid of the lot, including Pinto. I know everybody seems to love the guy, but he can''t defend.

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I was there on the weekend. The highlights are very kind!

Our back line is sooooooo static. Sooooooo reactive rather than proactive. Sooooooo edgy. Soooooooo easy to run through.

It is no surprise to me that the ONLY team with a worse away day concession tally is already relegated!

The question for me is ... could a gifted coach drill them to be better? I''m sure Pulis and Allardyce would have them achieving clean sheets within a month.

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Someone is going to have to do something with most of what we have. There''s no way we could get rid of six (?) players and build a whole new defence over the summer. I imagine Klose will go because we see more value in the money we would get for him than what he has shown he is capable of delivering in the Championship. Whittaker is out of contract, Dijks will, sadly, obviously be getting a better offer, so I think we''ll have to keep the rest.

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Bassong and Turner are also out of contract. I think they will both go and we''ll take up the option on Bennett just so we''re not left completely short.

If I''m right we''ll see Bassong, Turner, Whits and Klose all leave. We''ll be left with...

Martin

Pinto

Bennett

Toffolo (?)

Not much to start with, so we''ll need a left back and at least two centre halves.

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Ironic post thread. A funeral directors ad comes up on my phone whilst reading this.

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[quote user="king canary"]Bassong and Turner are also out of contract. I think they will both go and we''ll take up the option on Bennett just so we''re not left completely short.

If I''m right we''ll see Bassong, Turner, Whits and Klose all leave. We''ll be left with...

Martin

Pinto

Bennett

Toffolo (?)

Not much to start with, so we''ll need a left back and at least two centre halves.[/quote]We have needed two centre halves for about three years according to my reckoning.

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None of the defence is good enough and your right about Pinto.

Supporters of Norwich seem to love a foreigner we sign from abroad. Because Pinto does those pitch war things on twitter etc we seem to love him. If Whittaker defended like him he would get crucified

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I think players like pinto and klose are players that fans are desperate to see do well for one reason or another. We seem to love a foreigner with a bit of character. I was desperate for klose to become a city legend, still am, but sadly it''s not going to be and I think there comes a time where you have to leave sentiment to one side and admit defeat. That time is now (probably some time ago on actual fact).

All senior goalkeepers and defenders need to go.

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One thing it is worth considering is how tactically we''ve really not helped out our defence. Attacking fullbacks, not much cover from wingers, no disciplined holding midfielder to help and no inclination to change the formation or style from either manager so far. We need fresh blood but I don''t think they''ve been particularly helped either.

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Very true king, however there are mistakes being made on repeat in pretty much every match that are unforgivable and can only lead, in my view, to the conclusion that they are simply not good enough. They''re not fit for purpose.

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To be fair we all appreciate attacking football but it''s fair to say AN got the balance horribly wrong.

The reality is with the squad we have we should have been able to adopt a more resilient approach and rely on the individual quality of our attacking players to create enough to score. It''s fair to say we shouldn''t need to overload the final third with our fullbacks etc.

Even at the start of the season when we had a good record we were conceding goals both home and away. That meant any team coming to face us knew they''d stand a chance of getting something.

People will say I''m being a bit hypocritical because I was one of many who wanted rid of Hughton. The main difference is, particularly in the prem, we didn''t have enough individual quality to make a goal out of nothing so playing so defensively simply invited pressure onto us. And more importantly, when we went a goal down we didn''t adjust or throw caution to the wind.

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[quote user="hogesar"]People will say I''m being a bit hypocritical because I was one of many who wanted rid of Hughton. The main difference is, particularly in the prem, we didn''t have enough individual quality to make a goal out of nothing so playing so defensively simply invited pressure onto us. And more importantly, when we went a goal down we didn''t adjust or throw caution to the wind.[/quote]
Not necessarily hypocritical but there is a case for wanting middle ground that doesn''t really exist. We had all this "Norwich way" bollox after Hughton. The board bought into it and you had McNally talking about it. There was a season ticket holder on here who reckoned he''d had a private audience with McNally who had assured him this "Norwich way" was going to happen. And it did with Neil Adams and Alex neil. But the people who wanted this new style only wanted it when we won and as soon as we started losing matches they started harping on about defence. 
The way I see it what we really want is to win games and the vast majority are happy then whatever style we play.

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You cant play attacking football until you have the defence sorted. You have to have a formation in place that allows for when you lose the ball, which every team does when trying to create.

In my opinion we don''t have the pace or quality in the centre half and defensive midfield positions to allow both full backs to push forward at the same time. Pinto and Dijks are better wing backs than full backs. Playing three centre halves with wing backs would provide more cover against breakaways and rely less on the need for Pinto, in particular, to head the ball clear which he simply can''t do.

AN never bought into this idea as shown by the amount he spent on attacking wide players. That''s fine as that was his preferred way of playing but then he should have looked to buy full backs who can defend! Adam Drury we miss you.

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The 3rd highest scorers in the league. The third worst defence in the league. That must cause some bad feelings amongst those that are scoring knowing that their good work is being undone so easily and so often.

There''s very little reason to keep any of our defence.

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[quote user="K Lo"]The 3rd highest scorers in the league. The third worst defence in the league. That must cause some bad feelings amongst those that are scoring knowing that their good work is being undone so easily and so often.

There''s very little reason to keep any of our defence.[/quote]

Or those going forwards dont work as hard at defending when they lose the ball. I agree though the defence does needs a overhaul and probably has done for the last three years.

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[quote user="K Lo"]The 3rd highest scorers in the league. The third worst defence in the league. That must cause some bad feelings amongst those that are scoring knowing that their good work is being undone so easily and so often.

There''s very little reason to keep any of our defence.[/quote]

It''s not just the defence. As demonstrated about Arsenal on Match of the Day last night, who also let in soft goals, if there is a lack of communication or lack of leadersip across their team and that is why their team doesn''t work as it should.  Without it you don''t have a team, you just have a collection of good players who don''t have what it takes to be successful.  Lack of covering back by midfielders, forwards who get too far ahead of the midfield, defenders who get too far forwards and the rest of the team not compensating, leads to too many open spaces, vulnerability to the ball over the top and with a lack of good team play the result.Arsenal are one thing - they have a lot of money, but they are ultimately not successful because they don''t have the right mix of players - too many players who think they are good, but ones that collectively do not work well enough as a team.  This season we started with a very strong squad of players who thought they were good enough to win the league, but got a rude awakening.  I''d hoped that the penny would have dropped with them, the manager and everyone at the club that something would have to change, but it doesn''t seem like it has. I''m certain that they have been working hard in training and in matches - or at least they think they are - but that hard work is not getting them anywhere. The lack of inspiration - or character - on the pitch is something we''re missing this season. In the past, Snodgrass was a dominating kind of character and that should have been good for us, but it wasn''t (imo).  Previous to that we had Holt who was a huge influence on and off the pitch. BJ was a terrific influence for a large part of our promotion.  Gary O''Neil was a good influence when he was on the pitch (apart from the Stoke match).  Looking at our team/squad now -Naismith looks to have the fight imo, but around him there is not much else. The creative players in Wes and Pritchard are there to buzz around and create things, which is all well and good, but the rest are powder puff. For the spine of the team - Howson is effective on his day, but is often too quiet (imo). Tettey is quick and is good at breaking up play, but lacks footballing intelligence (imo). Martin is not dominating enough a character to be captain.Bennett lacks intelligence, full stop. Klose and Bassong have ability but are unreliable. Ruddy does not have sufficient confidence anymore (punch drunk imo from too many heavy defeats in the PL over several seasons)McGovern doesn''t dominate his defence.Of the others, Jerome is not consistent enough with his finishing. Jacob is terrific too, but doesn''t do enough about home when we don''t have the ball (imo). The only players who are imo doing the business are Pinto, Dijks and Oliveira. So overall, good players but without enough character/know how to defend as a team.  Sorry for another long ramble, but imo it''s more than just a poor defence. It goes right through the team/squad.

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too simplistic to just blame the back four; they have been poor for far too long and should have been replaced a long while ago, and its no coincidence that the poor defending disease spread to ruddy and klose from martin and bennett over time but we are supposed to defend as a team, and we dont

the central midfield has got away scot free; we have simply not dominated the midfield in games, we keep possession in undangerous parts of the field but influencing the pace of the game and winning the ball back has been poor. Even worse has been any defensive discipline in providing any semblence of a shield for the defence beyond a chocolate fireguard. Tettey, howson, mulumbu and dorrans have all sat deep and none, not one of them, has shone in that role. Tettey did two years ago but not this season. Throw in the attacking four thinking they are only attackers its no surprise the weak back four creaks, 40 goals away from home already is relegation numbers. A good job we are good at home.

Tettey, Howson, Dorrans and mulumbu, in providing no shield, in not winning tackles or tracking midfield runners, they have under-performed as much as the back four and they are a large part of our weak defence and need to question their season, and future too.

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