Per Mertesacker has admitted that there are still some teething problems as the defensive line gets used to having a new goalkeeper behind them.

After the victory over Crystal Palace, the BFG has been eager to speak about the importance of communication within the team and how, at times, we lack this.

Recently, he connected this to having a new goalkeeper, Petr Cech, as our final man and admitted that the team do need to learn to communicate better on the pitch.

“Sometimes it takes longer than you think to get to know a new goalkeeper,” said the centre-back. “The interaction between the goalkeeper and the back four has to be at the top level to compete in the Premier League.”

The defender continued, “Petr came in and I had an understanding from the start: we both communicate well and understand each other, but we keep working at it. He is someone who has to talk [to his centre-halves] and is really responsible. We match our ambitions on the pitch and so it is great to communicate with him.”

Petr Cech has previously been hailed for his communication skills, so learning each other’s rhythms and movements shouldn’t be too difficult for a keeper as experienced as he is.

“He is very experienced,” the BFG went on. “You can feel that – he has a lot of things to say and, in the dressing room, gives us a great lift. Even when we lose a game, he has some good ideas on and off the pitch, which shows how important he can be for us.

“He is experienced enough to know what went wrong [against West Ham], so you don’t have to tell him. Mistakes will happen, but my feeling is he comes back even stronger. That game last week [against West Ham] was a reminder for us to be aware there is big competition everywhere in the Premier League.

“There was not that intensity which we had at home but the way we responded at Palace was very good. It was important to bounce back.”

Once our back line get used to having a real authority and presence behind them, I do imagine they’ll be formidable opposition. It’s all a learning curve at the moment – the only problem is said learning curve is in one of the most competitive leagues in the world.

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