|Ipswich Town 1 v 0 Wigan Athletic|
Saturday, 15th December 2018 Kick-off 15:00
Lambert: First Win Was Always Going to Be a Scrappy One
Saturday, 15th Dec 2018 18:06
Boss Paul Lambert said he had a feeling his first Town victory would be a scrappy one, the Blues having played better in a number of previous games than during the 1-0 weather-affected home win against Wigan.
“The conditions were horrendous,” Lambert said. “I think anybody would like to play in the rain but the wind doesn’t make anything good.
“In the first half I thought we were dominant with the ball, we never looked under threat really.
“In the second half we had to defend strongly with the conditions. Deano’s made a great save, but overall it was one of the best since I’ve been here.”
Regarding goalscorer Freddie Sears, who has netted five times since Lambert took charge in late October, he added: “He’s doing ever so well at the minute, Freddie. Great pro, terrific lad as well and he’s getting better, his all-round game is getting better.
“That’s another goal, five goals, an incredible return from a wide player. I think he’s enjoying his football, which is important.”
The deflected goal had an element of luck about it but Lambert believes his team haven’t always got what their performances warranted from previous games.
“I think we’ve deserved more,” he insisted. “We’ve played really, really well in a lot of games and walked away with nothing or drawn when we should have won. The level of performance the lads have given me I can’t ask for any more.”
Asked how key the victory, after a winless run of nine matches, could be, he responded: “Nobody knows. We’ve got a helluva lot of games to go. It’s one win, you’ve got to go to the next one and try and win that.
“But we’re playing well, that’s the thing. The atmosphere in the stadium, I’ve never experienced it when you’re at the bottom of the table and the atmosphere’s like this, this is not normal.
“The supporters have been absolutely brilliant. Our job is to get the younger generation into the stadium as well and get more people in.
“The atmosphere in the stadium isn’t a normal situation because we’re at the bottom but I think what they see is everybody going the same way and everybody is starting to pull together which is important to us and if we get the fans in what a place this will be, this will be bouncing.”
He says it was important to get the win to establish some momentum: “Especially for the supporters. Even up at Stoke last week they were fantastic. Especially for them.
“We’re a football club and we have to give them something back as well because they’ll get behind us.
“And I’ve seen it from the short time I’ve been here how loyal they are and how vocal they are.”
Regarding the surprisingly long seven-minute injury time, he added: “I just wanted to know where the fire was, there must have been a fire in the stadium! There must have been because I can’t remember seven minutes, where that came from.
“Some of the decisions in the game were strange. But the referee calls things the way he sees them, but seven minutes, I never saw that coming.”
He continued: “I had the feeling our first one was going to be a scrappy one because we were playing ever so well with the ball, we were dominating the ball, dominating games.
“But sometimes you get games where you think you’re going to have to put your shoulder to the wheel and see things through. I thought they did that, defending-wise we were excellent.”
The win and results elsewhere have seen the gap to 21st reduced to five points plus goal difference.
“There’s a long, long way to go,” he said. “As I said before, if we can get a little bit of help somewhere to give them a hand, then great and let’s see what happens. But a long, long way to go.”
Reminded that Town have another big home game next week when they face Sheffield United, he said:“You can ask me that from now until the end of the season, every game’s big to me, I’ll say exactly the same to you every game.
“The bottom line is that as soon as your season starts, your first game of the season is a big one. That’s when the season starts. The season doesn’t start now, it starts in August, so you view every game you play in from August as big, not from now, every game.
“Put it this way, if the lads had been performing properly at the start of the season I wouldn’t be sitting here, that’s the reality of football.”
Wigan manager Paul Cook didn't think it was a game his team were destined to lose.
“I think it was a really tough day for football," he said. "Everyone will have their own opinion on the game.
“I didn’t think we were ever in any danger of losing the game, that was for sure, second half. Great credit to Ipswich for winning the game, it’s a strong result for them. It was a very spirited performance but we weren’t under pressure in the game at all.
“It was a case, in my opinion, of whether we could go on and win the game. Unfortunately we couldn’t.
“We’ve got a pattern of away results now that is very disappointing. It’s there,
“Today, I felt our lads worked, I felt it was a good game, two honest teams having a good go at each other on a really poor day for football.
“The game was never going to be a good game, it never was. I felt unfortunately for us we’ve come out on the end of a result we didn’t deserve but that’s football.”
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