Graham Westley: Newport County boss says academies are not focussing on defending

Newport County
Newport have now won just one game all season and have taken just two points from the last 21 on offer in League Two

Newport County boss Graham Westley has criticised the development of young players and insisted academies fail to focus on defending.

County lost 3-1 to Plymouth thanks to two penalties from Graham Carey while Jordan Slew scored Argyle's third.

Westley said all the goals had been preventable and his young side's inexperience was to blame.

"The academy structure is all about playing football and not enough about winning games," Westley said.

"We've got a lot of young players who have come up through the academy.

"I'm a big critic of the academy system in the sense that it teaches attacking play, it teaches possession, it teaches technique, it does not teach players to defend."

Westley has lost both of his games in charge of the Exiles since his appointment earlier in October but believes his side need experience following the defeat by Plymouth.

"There's no onus or emphasis put on the defensive side of the game and too many players don't value tackles and the basics of the game," he continued.

"It's a lack of game intelligence, again young players lacking game intelligence and suddenly we are 3-1 down and the game gets away from us."

Newport are seven points from safety at the bottom of League Two following the defeat to table-topping Argyle.

Not even a wonder-strike from frontman Jon Parkin proved enough for County as Westley suffered defeat on his home debut as Newport boss.

But the former Peterborough United and Stevenage boss insists things are moving in the right direction at Rodney Parade.

"Over 90 minutes we did a lot of good things. There's no question. I thought we showed great character," he added.

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