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Lambert: We Were Relentless in the Second Half
Tuesday, 20th Aug 2019 23:01

Town boss Paul Lambert felt his team were relentless in the second half as they came from behind to beat AFC Wimbledon 2-1 at Portman Road.

Kayden Jackson netted the winner deep in injury time as the Blues scored late for the second game running to claim their first home victory of the season.

“I thought the second half we were relentless,” Lambert said. “I thought the lads that came on were massive.

“I thought the first half we were too passive, we had too much of the ball but without doing anything with it.

“James Norwood had two good chances I thought should have scored and they had one real chance to score and it gave them something to hang on to.

“I’ve been involved in many, many games, even as a player myself, where you come up against opposition where they make it difficult for you and try and hit you on the counter and you have too much of the ball and you need that little bit of a break somewhere to help you.

“I thought the changes we made in the second half were good and the lads came on and did great.

“But I thought we were relentless in the second half, the atmosphere, the emotion of the crowd drove us forward as well. The support, it didn't sound like 18,000 in here, it sounded like a full stadium, it was incredible noise.”

Lambert admitted it was the type of game where the crowd start to get edgy: “Absolutely, you could hear the rumblings in the first half but hopefully they remember the team is young, we’ll lose games at certain moments, at certain times but as long as they can be patient.

“But the support since I’ve been here has been phenomenal. That noise was just incredible.”

Debutant sub Anthony Georgiou made a significant contribution having come off the bench.

“He did, I thank Mauricio Pochettino for letting him come, I saw him playing in the tournament, the Audi Cup, he played left-back for Tottenham and Tottenham were really kind to let us have him.

“[Academy manager] Dean Rastrick, who I know really well, at Tottenham said about the lad and I met him on Saturday before the Peterborough game and thankfully he came and gave us that little bit of a spark. Him Judgey and Kayden came on and did really, really well for us.”

Lambert confirmed he was booked for overcelebrating, according to referee Antony Coggins: “Celebrating. It’s terrible isn’t it? Taking the fun away from the game. It’s rubbish really. It’s poor. If you can’t celebrate in the last minute you’re taking the fun out of football, the emotion.

“The emotion of football is 90 per cent of the game for everybody, for the supporters, for the team, for the dugouts, everybody that’s involved.”

Lambert said at the weekend he would have to rest skipper Luke Chambers at some stage and dismissed the suggestion it was a big decision to make at this point in the campaign.

“No, not a big decision because I’ve only got three centre-halves, as it stands at the minute,” he insisted.

“If we run the risk of one getting injured, we’d only have two to see us through so many games and I have to be fair to everybody else.

“If we play so many games and the other lads are not playing any games it takes them three or four games to get up to speed.

“James Wilson has done great, Luke Woolfenden’s done great, Luke Chambers has done great, and that will happen through the season because I’ve only got three.

“It’s different if Toto Nsiala’s back, I’ll have four centre-halves. It was the right call because we need everybody up to speed, fitness-wise.”

He confirmed Chambers was very much rested rather than dropped: “Absolutely, but I said that at the start of the season because we’re maybe got 60 games.

“And if we have somebody playing 35 games and somebody playing three, the centre-half that plays three, while the one that’s played 35 games is out for seven or eight weeks it’s difficult for them to get them up to speed. There's a logic behind it and it was the right decision.”

Lambert was delighted that Will Keane rejoined the Blues on a one-year deal with an option for a further season earlier today.

“He’s come back down, he loves it that much, I think he must love that marina!” he joked. “It’s great, he’s doing really well. Hopefully he’ll take part in a bit of the [U23s] game on Friday, him and Jon Nolan.

“Hopefully he’ll be playing on Friday because he is a quality striker. Hopefully his fitness, he’s got a lot to prove as he knows, for his own career. For his own career he has to play games.”

Lambert says he and his staff had been monitoring the former loanee’s progress as he recovered from the hamstring operation he underwent at the end of last season.

“We knew exactly where he was, what was happening and where he was fitness levels-wise,” he added.

“We knew we only had Norwood and Jackson as it stands at the minute and Will coming in I think will add something really, really good.

“Norwood scored, that’s him scored two, Jackson scored. But I’m really pleased with the way things are going.”

Lambert had said he wanted three signings with Keane the third, but he says that might not necessarily be the end of his transfer business with the window shutting on September 2nd.

“I’ll wait and see,” he said. “I’ve still got another couple of weeks to see where I think maybe we might need strengthening.

“Luke Garbutt, hopefully won’t be long, Toto won’t be long, Nolan’s definitely just about there. Gwion Edwards has done really well to get back. Judgey, the rust is starting go, he’s starting to come back. The squad’s getting stronger.

“Kane Vincent-Young, I think he’ll train tomorrow, I think he’ll be available. Put it this way, it’s a lot more healthy than it was the week we played Burton, a lot healthier.”

AFC WImbledon manager Wally Downes said: “Very encouraging for us, but it’s important that we don’t become a team that play well and don’t win.

“As long as we rectify the errors and learn from it then I’m sure we’ll be fine.

“We go on to Sunderland now, another great stadium to go to with this young team and I’m sure if we put on another performance like that we’ll be rewarded.”

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BurleysGloryDays added 23:08 - Aug 20
We march on!


osborne added 23:11 - Aug 20
Great celebration by Lambert. Worth the yellow card. Real passion.

brainbox added 23:12 - Aug 20
Brilliant effort after changes made in second half. A gentle bit of advice for PL. NEVER start with only one up front again!

Umros added 23:29 - Aug 20
Karma served from another time wasting team. At last we are the team scoring 90 minutes plus goals!

Talbs77 added 23:44 - Aug 20
In my opinion he got the selection wrong at at the starting line up and 1st half we were shocking.

For me it’s all about 442 Norwood looked a different player with Jackson.

What a player this boy from Spurs is he ran the show 2nd half and thought made Kenlock more confident.

There isn’t one team I have seen so far that has worried me and with other players coming back from injury as well as the 3 we have brought in it’s looking a lot more positive.

One other thing for me is the crowd, I’ve been coming to PR for 30 years and it’s been 10 years since I have head atmosphere like this season. My 9 year came tonight (he’s been to other games in last 4 years) and for first time was buzzing after game. That’s what it’s all about.

We go again Saturday 💪

Gforce added 23:49 - Aug 20
Great second half performance,never gave up and showed plenty of character.Must start with Jackson and Georgiou on Saturday at Bolton,with hopefully another 3 points.

Sindre94 added 23:50 - Aug 20
4-4-2 worked the magic today as we struggled to get some intensity and momentum going, but I wouldnt say that one up top doesn't work for that matter. Had we turned the three in midfield around and played with an attacking midfielder instead of a holding, and with a proper left winger, things would have looked different.

Let's say we play:

That's a really attacking team with potential to keep possession of the ball while having a decent shape to it. I've felt we've been exposed and run over in midfield when playing 4-4-2, and there's a reason why PL has gone away from it in the latter stages of every game so far this season. The high intensity, high press and "crazy" style of play we apply when using the 4-4-2 is great for spells of the game, but it's impossible to keep that up for 90 minutes.

Nevertheless I'm absolutely delighted with the win, and though there are issues that need to adressed, I think we can all be pleased by the fact that we pick up points while being so far away from our best. That combined with the "never say die"-mentality, makes us a really decent side, and I'm excited to see how we do once all the players are settled and back to match sharpness. Imagine this team with unfit players like Huws, Garbutt, Lankester, Sears, Nolan, Toto, Judge and Bish back to full speed.... we can also look forward to getting KVY in the team. Thought JD was poor today. Honest bloke and a decent character, but not good enough to play RB in an attacking-minded team. Good for cover, but not as a starter. Kenlock looked better when Georgiou came on.


TimmyH added 00:17 - Aug 21
Yep! Lambert got the personnel and system wrong first half - too many fringe players together in midfield in terms of creation - Rowe, Dozzell (who continues to be underwhelming) and Mizouni all looked a bit 'passive' as Lambert said.

shakytown added 04:44 - Aug 21
I think Dozzell has been talked up too much by the fans and its gone to his head. Young player who needs to learn that you have to work hard to succeed.

RoyalAscotBlue added 08:55 - Aug 21
Dozzell has the ability to pick a pass, for sure. He is still very much a work in progress though and needs to be given time. Playing him and Mizouni together was possibly a little unfair but hopefully they will have both learned something.

If I was scout watching Town at the moment then there's only one young man that I'd be talking about and that's Flynn Downes.

SamsDad added 09:14 - Aug 21
Relentless is stretching it a bit I’d say, but certainly much better 2nd half. Hopefully the contrast of 442 v 451 will not have gone unnoticed with PL. Now with WK too no need to play 451 as can just change out strikers if he feels they need a rest.

At the other end JD, confidence looks shot.

Like the look of Georgiou, and glad for Jackson, first of many I hope!

TractorRoyNo1 added 09:55 - Aug 21
....but we were sh!te in the first half

NB start with your best 11 go 2 up then take them off if necessary, not the other way around

LondonTractor added 09:59 - Aug 21
Why do they always do it to us!!??
Second half was much, much better than the first. We are not good enough to play one up front. We don't keep the ball well enough and our supporting midfielders are not quick enough to get around Norwood. When we changed to 442, it was a million times better and Wimbledon couldn't handle it.
I thought Wolfenden, Downes and Norwood were superb all night. In fact Downes was MOM for me.
However the subs had a massive impact. Great to see someone running at defences the way Georgiou did, plus he gave Kenlock a massive boost of confidence in the second half as well - he was a different player.
I am sure Donacien is a lovely guy and I don't doubt his determination, but how he has ever made it as a pro footballer I don't know.
Jury still out on Holy as well. Definitely needs to improve his kicking. Some of those balls were coming down with snow on, and it was food and drink for the giants at the back for Wimbledon to head away.
PL please keep the 442 formation going forward, even if you rotate personnel, we must play with 2 up front in order to score goals. We are very unlikely to get overrun in midfield with the quality we have in the ranks for this level of football.
Great turn out from the fans - nearly 19,000, Tuesday night at home to Wimbledon!
Well done lads, great character and determination to come back from 1 down.

Kikapu added 10:39 - Aug 21
Nice report and analysis 'Sindre94', and well written too. Many thanks.

Linkboy13 added 10:41 - Aug 21
Don't think we should get too carried away we've just struggled to beat a poor Wimbledon side but in the second half things looked quite promising the boy from Tottenham was quality they must try and extend the loan until the end of the season As with all quality players he seemed to have time on the ball reminded me a bit of Bobby Petta .

Orraman added 11:05 - Aug 21
The last fifteen minutes was what football is all about. Noise, excitement, two late goals and celebrations. Slowly but surely the powers that be are strangling excitement out of the game. PL gets booked for celebrating a last minute winner. Of course he celebrates - his future depends on success so why should he not celebrate with his beloved fans. It's not as if he ran on to the pitch to join the players euphoria.
In the Premier League even the fans are now being denied immediate euphoria as they have to wait to see if VAR can somehow disallow the goal. I should imagine it's difficult to celebrate after a gap of up to two minutes. At least we as fans still have spontaneity at our level. We all go to watch football to see goals, whether it's Premier League or Bostik League. The very occasional goal even used to brighten up a McCarthy match. So keep on celebrating Paul - once a Blue always a Blue

IpswichT62OldBoy added 11:10 - Aug 21
It's starting to feel like Ipswich Town again

cat added 11:50 - Aug 21
For me the juries still out on Lambert. It’s all smoke and mirrors with PL. Reconnecting the fan base and bigging up the fans on every occasion is all good and positive, but it’s on the pitch where he needs to deliver. We have made a decent start to the season, although it’s been laboured at best. We now have a squad capable of achieving something and I hope PL brings success, but on last nights showing you feel that the wheels could fall off at any time.

pennblue added 12:43 - Aug 21
cat - I have to agree it is not quite happening on the pitch yet for sure. But you have to give PL credit that he has reconnected the fans with the club, and he has definitely got something started here. If the supporters continue with this new wave of positivity, the team will benefit hugely from this. All the years of negativity, we as supporters just have to go to every single game we possibly can, and get behind them for 90 minutes. It will come together on the pitch I am sure, he is still tinkering. i feel like he does know what he is doing, he has got that left hand side working well 2nd half, which can only improve when Garbutt comes back. He is looking to do the same own the right hand side too no doubt, which is probably where the other signing may come from. If we can attack down both wings with Norwood up front, we will be there or there abouts.

FenboyBlue added 13:10 - Aug 21
From Passive to Massive.
Bit like Jungle ?

jayessess added 13:11 - Aug 21
Injury depleted, still trying to find a pattern to our play, conceding silly goals, but... still undefeated and Top 6 after a tricky set of opening fixtures. If I were everybody else in the division I'd be worried.

nathitfc89 added 13:15 - Aug 21
dodgy first half performance but that second half was something else. we play so much better as a 4-4-2. when that young spurs loanee came on, he changed the game, future is very bright. roll on saturday. COYB

Razor added 15:14 - Aug 21
Lets just say we finished with the team we should have started with----thats why we were rellentless in the second half!

cat added 15:57 - Aug 21
pennblue - indeed crédit has to be given to Lambert for his off field work and the positivity around the club is all good. My point regarding Lamberts management credentials is the fact he came in last year to save us which he didn’t, he’s had pretty much the worse win % percentage out of any of our previous managers before this league 1 campaign, and he ain’t achieved nothing since he left Norwich. Like I say though I hope he cuts it, cause he a good, honest and likeable bloke. As I said on a previous post, let’s see where we are at after 10/15 games to gauge exactly where we are at. As for being relentless in the second half, not so imo, maybe the second half of the second half!! But hey, let’s keep positive, cause the vibe after that winning goal was second to none from my own personal experience.

BettyBlue added 16:09 - Aug 21
I've seen enough of Lambert to come to the conclusion he doesn't know what he's doing.
No improvement in 10 months. Atrocious team selection and a lucky 3 points, nothing to do with the manager.
How many years are we going to be stuck in this division?

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