Newcastle United - Window Shopping: NUFC's defence
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Window Shopping: NUFC's defence

Following the 5-1 drubbing at Liverpool the defence gained a modicum of respect back by holding Hull`s reserves to a 0-0 at the KC Stadium. However that only papered over the current cracks.

At the moment we`ve got Habib Beye out until March which is a major blow. Beye was our only specialist right full back and this showed against the Scousers as they pezzled that side of the pitch. Moving inside we`re probably better stocked in terms of numbers but not in quality. Taylor has failed to progress in four years of playing first team football, still making the same old mistakes.

Coloccini hasn`t justified his £10m tag at all. We got an early shot of his frailty in the air when faced by Coventry City in the Carling Cup, with the Argentinian failing badly when challenged by defenders coming up from the back. This was again prevelant against the Scousers as Hyppia ran riot at set pieces.

Bassong has come on leaps and bounds but it seems criminal to suggest he is the solution to our problems. He started the season as a back up and now looks to be our number one defender but, only in his early 20s, he is bound to suffer a form dip. Definitely a starter but would benefit from an old head beside him.

At left back we again struggle. Enrique got slaughtered by Lennon of Spurs and is so often on the treatment table that we`ve had to rely on N`Zogbia, who will never make a left back as long as I`ve got a pulse.

In reserve we have David Edgar, out of contract in the summer and not Premiership standard, as shown consistently since 2007.

In my line of thinking it`s patently obvious we need a leader in the back four, who need not be a world beater but must have some nous about positioning and organisation.

We need a right back capable of challenging Beye for the position when fit and capable of coming in and making a difference now.

Lastly we desperately need a specialist left back to cover for Enrique as he is sure to break down and be out for another month imminently.

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The Journalist

Writer: Ross Molyneux Mail feedback, articles or suggestions

Date:Sunday January 4 2009

Time: 5:54PM


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