King Kenny: Settled Back Four The Key

Last updated : 28 October 2003 By Brian Cartlidge

The Blues skipper, a studio guest on the Goals on Sunday show on Sky Sports, told presenter Rob McCaffrey: "When you have a settled back four organisation comes naturally and since the middle of last season we have had a very settled back four.

"Predominently myself, Matty Upson, Jamie Clapham and Jeff Kenna/Damien Johnson at right back. That does help.

"We do our work on the training pitch we get ourselves as organised as we can. There is not substitution for a settled back four."

Asked of his partnership with Matty Upson he said jokingly: "He runs quicker than me, he heads the ball better than me, he pings a ball better than me, I think I'd better stop there."

And more seriously, he added: "The pairing is all important. It's not neccessarily who are the best two centre-halves at the club its who works better in tandem as a partnership.

"He's an outstanding player. I think I've benefitted more from Matty's presence than he has from mine.

"As soon as he came into the football club within the space of a few days people realised we'd got an absolute gem of a signing and thats proved to be the case. Its no surprise he's gone on to international recognition since.

"It hasn't just been about us two though, we have Darren Purse and Olivier Tebily at the football club too so we have good competition in that area of the pitch and its been a real group effort thats got us this far this season."

The Blues defence, after the 1-0 win at Bolton on Saturday, have now kept eight clean sheeets in the first ten games and quite remarkably three of that regular back-four Matty Upson, King Kenny himself and Jamie Clapham have yet to be booked so far this season.