We are 'THROWING' games away

Last updated : 11 November 2004 By Craig Hope (website editor)

It has been coming for a while – a goal conceded as a result of squandering possession from a throw-in. Eidur Gudjohnsen it was who capitalised upon our inability to maintain possession from a defensive throw with Chelsea’s first goal last night.

It can be almost guaranteed that within five seconds of a defensive throw-in that the opposition will have the ball. We appear void of ideas and movement and ultimately surrender the football and put ourselves under unnecessary pressure. It is one of football’s most simple aspects, yet it is one that Newcastle manage to make look consistently difficult. It can be argued that a good tactic for our opponents is to ‘kick for touch’ as in Rugby. If we have a throw deep in our own half then our opponents have a real chance of threatening our goal.

Last night it was O’Brien’s throw that relinquished possession before the ball fell to the Icelandic striker who struck a low shot past Given. Against Fulham our set pieces in our own half were very poor. We often play ourselves into unnecessary trouble.

I believe that we should go back to basics; a throw straight down the line with the aim of gaining yards and another throw-in or a throw back to a defender to clear first time downfield. We appear incapable of feet and return – the return ball either being short or inaccurate. A little movement also seems above our capabilities, we never have a free man available.

We are literally ‘throwing’ games away all too often. Souness must address this quite blatant weakness in our game otherwise we will continue to add yet more pressure to an already suspect back line.