“If he shouted in Norwich it could be heard in Yarmouth” - Dave Stringer on why Norwich City need a leader like Duncan Forbes
PUBLISHED: 16:20 18 February 2016 | UPDATED: 16:55 18 February 2016
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Former Norwich City manager Dave Stringer says the current side need someone to show the leadership traits of fellow legend Duncan Forbes to stop them from throwing away leads as they have done in two of the last three home games.
Stringer says his former defensive partner was the ‘perfect leader’ during his time at the club – with a voice that could be heard “as far away as Great Yarmouth”.
Stringer’s comments came at a Legends Q&A night, organised by the Norwich City Fans Social Club.
Responding to a question about the 2-2 draw at home to West Ham at the weekend – a game City had led 2-0 at one stage – he said: “I think we played well for the first part of the game in terms of our pressing of the opposition, which we haven’t done for some time.
“The problem with sitting too deep is you can be lured into a false sense of security, thinking you are safe and in control when actually the opposition have a lot of the ball and are starting to get on top.
“You could see this happening on Saturday.
“At 2-0 down they came on to us, of course, but we allowed them to do that. Then when it is 2-1 that is a very dangerous scoreline as players get fidgety and anxious and that can spread right through the team.
“That is especially so when you haven’t won for a while.
“In that situation it needs a leader on the pitch to have acted in the same way that Big Dunc would have done.
“If he shouted in Norwich it could be heard in Yarmouth and his type of leadership would have gone through the side.
“I do think we can be a bit naïve. You see other sides when they are ahead do all they can to disrupt the opposition and the game. They make subs, go down injured for a bit and perhaps we need to do a bit more of that.”
Stringer, now 71, played for the Canaries between 1965 and 1976, making 499 appearances, and was in charge between 1987 and 1992, when he famously guided City to two FA Cup semi-finals and to fourth place in the old Division One.
His playing partnership with Forbes was the stuff of legend.
“He (Forbes) really got people going,” added Stringer. “If someone was slacking, he would make sure they knew about it and I don’t see so many players like that in the game today.”
The forum was hosted by the recently-formed Norwich City Fans Social Club and saw around 150 people put questions to host Darren Eadie, Adam Drury, Dean Ashton as well as Stringer.
• For a full report on the night and more on the new club read David Powles Fan’s View column next Thursday.