onto the defensive

onto the defensive

In a state of readiness, willingness, and preparedness to defend oneself against aggression, criticism, or attack. He went onto the defensive when we started questioning the originality of his work. She always puts me onto the defensive with the accusatory way she talks to me. The home team was forced onto the defensive now as their cross-town rivals try to push for a touchdown in the final minutes of the game.
See also: defensive

on/onto the deˈfensive

acting in a way that shows that you expect to be attacked or criticized; having to defend yourself: Their questions about the money put her on the defensive.Warnings of an enemy attack forced the troops onto the defensive. OPPOSITE: on the offensive
See also: defensive, on
References in periodicals archive ?
He, his son, grandson and successors steadily eroded the invaders' territories, the Norsemen were forced onto the defensive.
Driffield came onto the attack and took advantage of the extra man forcing the home side onto the defensive.
The Team Sky star was forced onto the defensive and could not stop Nibali cutting his lead, with the Bahrain Merida man finishing fourth.
The prospect of a renewed rise in OPEC output and global oil inventories during 2018 has thrown oil prices onto the defensive over the last four months.
Dugdale was forced onto the defensive as she faced tough questions on Corbyn's lessthan-outright condemnation of IRA terrorism at her manifesto launch.
However ministers also found themselves forced onto the defensive over Conservative plans to overhaul funding of social care which would for the first time see thousands of elderly people required to pay for the cost of being looked after in their own homes.
So far, ISIL has managed to take control over Manqourah, Zibedah, Dab' and Daba' and, consequentially, the Osoud Al-Sharqiya group has been forced onto the defensive for the time being.
Continued negative sentiment towards China has put the authorities back onto the defensive in recent days," Melanie Debono of Capital Economics said in a research note Wednesday.
A string of errors forced the Wolves onto the defensive for much of the third quarter but some robust work from forwards Ben Westwood and Chris Hill rallied their side and they drew level with a penalty from O'Brien on 58 minutes.
When these incidents occur, Muslims are forced onto the defensive, and feel they must explain that Islam is a religion of peace and tolerance, and that these terrorists are not representative of it.
Obama's boiling frustration with the Republicans over their resistance to his plans on immigration led him to make this important step, which has forced the Republicans onto the defensive.
The only success came when the United States collaborated with the Sunni Awakening movement in Iraq to push the jihadists onto the defensive.
Kenyatta, who lost one of his own nephews in Saturday's bloodbath, said he would not relent in a "war on terror" in Somalia, where Kenyan troops have pushed al Shabb onto the defensive over the past two years as part of an African Union-backed peacekeeping mission across the northern border.
The latest exchanges battered an administration repeatedly thrown onto the defensive by the political reverberations of the attack on September 11 which killed US ambassador to Libya Chris Stevens and three other Americans.
After the break Ipswich looked threatening and Boro were forced onto the defensive, Paul Taylor's 25-yard effort fizzing wide with 15 minutes left.