Milne: Lambert and Staff Highly Professional
Tuesday, 30th Oct 2018 13:55
Blues MD Ian Milne was delighted to welcome Paul Lambert to the club at this morning’s press conference at Playford Road, the 49-year-old Scot having become the 17th manager of Town’s professional era.
He is joined at Portman Road by assistant manager Stuart Taylor, first-team coach Matt Gill and fitness coach Jim Henry, who put the squad through their paces on the training ground following the press conference.
“Marcus did his usual very extensive research and we’re very pleased to welcome Paul Lambert," Milne said. “You’ve heard him this morning and what he stands for.
“Clearly he’s come in to review the team and take a judgement on that going forward but also it’s very important to win matches now, as he says.”
Milne says he hasn’t any concerns regarding Lambert’s history with Norwich City, where he was manager between 2009 and 2012.
“No, not at all,” he said. “He had great success with Norwich and he said that that was in the past and I think he’s absolutely correct. We do that with all our careers. That’s the past, we want success in the future.
“And he really is very sincere in wanting to get us out of the relegation zone and then move on from there.”
Milne says owner Marcus Evans had no qualms before appointing Lambert, on a deal until 2021, due to those Canary connections.
“No, I think it was interesting the questions asked today about Norwich and I’m hoping that will now fade away, you can only ask about it so many times,” he reflected.
“But there were no qualms about it. You’re going for the person, is that person right for the job in any recruitment and clearly from the small time I’ve spent with Paul over the weekend and today he’s a highly professional manager and his team are highly professional as well.”
He added: “He’s well-known for the skills he brings to us and we’re very grateful that he is with us. He’s brought a very good team with him, all highly professional people, so we’re looking for some great games coming up.”
Milne says fans have largely backed the decision to bring Lambert in: “The feedback we’ve got from fans so far is that this is a good appointment. It’s an appointment which is going to be just right for us at the moment going forward.
“As I say, he’s a very professional manager, his credentials are fantastic and I’m sure we’ll do well in the future.
“The next 11 matches are going to be very important up to the January window and we’ve got every faith that he is going to do what he can with the squad in place.
“He’s come in here with the squad that he’s got and unless there’s some free agents out there, and don’t think there are, he knows this is the gig and he’s very keen to get on and is very positive and he wants to turn the squad around to be winners.”
Reports over the weekend claimed Lambert had been handed a £10 million war chest for January. While that’s almost certain to be an exaggeration there is likely to be some money to spend in the transfer window.
Milne says Lambert will spend the next few weeks assessing what changes need to be made.
“Paul said that he wants to take a judgement on it, he’s got to spend time with us, he’s only been here five minutes and it’s important we give him time to look at the whole team, see them train, see them play,” he said.
“He has got a certain amount of time to see how they [are performing] because there’s not much alternative between now and the transfer window and the chance to make any changes.
“He’s going to see what he wants and I’m sure there will be a discussion with Marcus in January.”
Regarding former manager Paul Hurst, who departed last Thursday after less than five months in charge, and why that appointment didn’t work out, Milne said: “I think at the end of the day it’s got to be the results. We wish Paul Hurst all the best for the future but unfortunately it didn’t happen here and we’ve had to move on and luckily we’ve got a very good manager in Paul Lambert.”
Milne played down suggestions that relationships around the club under Hurst weren’t what they should have been.
“I think the relationships were good, I certainly got on well with Paul and Chris Doig and his team,” he insisted.
“But I think at the end of the day, we all saw it for ourselves [results were the issue] and so did the fans, who were very patient.
“And I hope they’ll be with us and I think the feedback so far that we’ve got is support for Paul Lambert for his team. Ipswich fans are always very fair to give the manager time, as is Marcus and we move on from there.”
With Hurst having received a settlement understood to be in the low hundred thousands and a manager of Lambert’s experience unlikely to be a cheap appointment - “No, but I’m not going to tell you his salary!” - the process of changing at the helm won’t have been inexpensive for Evans.
“There will be some costs involved and that’s going to be a personal issue with each of them," Milne added.
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