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Lambert: Really Good, Really Happy With Everybody
Saturday, 26th Oct 2019 18:42

Manager Paul Lambert hailed his side as "brilliant" after they returned to winning ways and the top of League One by beating Southend United 3-1 at Roots Hall.

James Norwood scored twice and Kayden Jackson once as the Blues halted their run of two successive defeats.

“Brilliant, tough game, new manager syndrome, usual stuff,” Lambert said. “The lads were great.

“Are we top of the league again? Maybe we’ll get some negative questions again, unless we turn the table upside down and we’re bottom!

“No, really good, really happy with everybody, lads have done brilliant, great support again. We played a good game. They didn’t really threaten other from corners but I was happy.”

He was pleased with the way his players handled what might have been a tricky game against a Shrimpers side led by new boss Sol Campbell for the first time.

“Absolutely because of the expectance level number one and secondly the new manager syndrome, which you do get but I thought the day was all about us and how we went about it,” he said.

“We spoke after the Rotherham game, we spoke leading up to this one, what we expect and what we think and they carried it out brilliantly. I thought the game plan was really good.

“We withstood the atmosphere in here in a local kind of game as such. The performance was good.

“We got a great goal from Norwood, the first goal. The front two were a handful all game and I thought we played a good game.”

He added: “I was asked yesterday about Norwood, he’s a unique kind of guy, the way he battles through things, he’s old school, and that’s compliment to him.

“Him and Kayden play really well together and the two of them scored again, so I’m really happy.

“I thought they were excellent, I thought they were a handful all game. As a pair they were excellent together. They complement each other really well and their finishing I think is different class.

“Norwood’s finishing was brilliant, right and left foot, and Kayden I think is really, really sharp at the minute. Really happy with the two of them.”

The Blues manager was also pleased with the impact made by his subs: “Jon Nolan was unfortunate to be left out, the reason I left him out was because he played a lot of football and missed a lot of pre-season and I thought he was excellent when he came on. Him and Flynn Downes were really, really good.

“James Wilson came on, did very well. Judgey, I thought looked more like his old self. So the three of them made an impact.”

Downes was booked in the ??th minute - meaning he’ll miss the game at Rochdale in 10 days as it was his fifth caution of the season - but never looked like drawing a second card from referee Andy Davies.

“He’s got that little streak in him where he can see the red mist at times but I’d never curtail that because he needs that in his game,” Lambert continued.

“I was happy, he showed really good maturity, he stayed on his feet and he played a really good game.”

Cole Skuse was subbed in the first half after suffering a knock, which Lambert says may have been down to the Blues playing several games in a short space of time.

“I don’t know if it’s his groin,” he said. “Three games in six days is a lot. I know Cole would probably say he could play every game.

“The thing you’ll never beat is age or time, it happens to every footballer. He’s been fabulous, he’s playing really, really well and maybe three games in six days was maybe just one too much.”

Kane Vincent-Young was replaced in the second half with a recurrence of the groin injury which has been hampering him for the last month.

“Yes, same little thing. We’ve got 10 days, we’ll see how they recover,” the Town manager added.

Lambert made the surprise decision to drop Tomas Holy and give Will Norris his first league start for the Blues.

“Nothing against Tomas at all, he’s been absolutely outstanding for us, as I said before,” the Blues manager said. “He wasn’t at fault for any goals in the last two games.

“I felt Will needed a game and a little bit of a lift. He trains hard, he works really hard, pushes Tomas to the limit and I just felt this one was the right call.

“To be fair, he’s really assured, he’s got a really great left foot on him. I was happy with how he played.

“There was probably a lot of pressure on him but I knew the type of goalkeeper he was because I saw him playing before and the lads should all know Will really well and I knew because I saw how well he plays, he’s a top keeper Will Norris.”

He says Holy took the decision professionally: “Great. One thing about Tomas Holy is he’s probably one of the hardest ones have had to tell he’s not playing because he’s such a nice guy.

“I always say I’ll never tell anybody any lies, I’ll always tell them why I’m doing it, the reason I’m doing it.

“He was great about it, probably disappointed, I get that, but I think he understands that we’re a squad, we’re a team and we have to try and utilise everybody.”

Will Norris now get a run in the side? “You never know what can happen in training. I’ll decide nearer the time. We’ve got 10 days, we’ll enjoy this one, we’ll go home, we’re top of the league and we’ll do it again next week.”

Lambert says he’s unconcerned that the Blues now have a gap before they play again, at Spotland a week on Tuesday.

“I’m not bothered and I don’t want anybody to have the mindset of ‘What happens here? What happens here?’,” he said.

“We’ve handled everything brilliantly, we’ve handled the way we’ve played, the expectance level, the whole occasion, the big crowd travelling to watch us.

“We know we’re in the strongest position out of all the teams in the league as it stands at the minute. Everybody would love to be where we are. We’ve got a game in hand and we’re playing well.”

And the break does give the likes of Skuse and Vincent-Young a chance to recover from their injuries.

“It does and hopefully that’s what’ll happen,” he said. “We’ll go and enjoy a few days’ rest because we’ve had three games in six days, which is a tough gig.

“So, I’m delighted with the team, how they’re going at the minute. I’m delighted with the club because the club is now really, really going the way you want it to go. We’ve only been here a year but the turnaround has been massive.”

Lambert was pleased with the way his team bounced back from the two defeats: “They always do. No matter what team you are. Even the best teams in the world lose a couple of games and people ask why that happens. It happens, it’s how you bounce back and the character and the way we played was excellent.”

The Blues switched back to a 4-4-2 system and he believes his side is capable of playing a variety of formations.

“I think they can do that now, I think they’re experienced enough to handle different ways of playing,” he reflected.

“I’ve got no problem with the system I play or what personnel I play. Whoever players, I trust them. And that’s the biggest compliment I can give them.”

Lambert said in some ways the performance was about getting back to basics, about returning to what had brought his team success earlier in the season.

“I think that was the biggest thing, as I said yesterday, we had to get that back. In a subconscious way you can’t play like that every single game, it’s tough,” he said.

“But the level we played today, especially against a team that’s going to try to impress their new manager and has just been beaten 7-1 and is having a hard time in the league.

“New manager syndrome, all the guys they’ve got have got a clean sheet, I guess, so they’re going to improve. A few weeks into the job they’ll probably return to how they normally are some of them.

“Sol’s got a big job here to try and turn it around but the atmosphere in the stadium today, that raises people’s games, they won’t always have that. But the way we played, I was really happy.”

He added: “Go back to what gave us the success up until now. I think we’d played 15 or 16 games including the cup games and we’ve only been beaten three times, so the level we’re playing at and the standard we’re setting is really, really high.”

Reflecting on the season up to now, Lambert says he takes pride in the manner in which the team have turned things around from the disappointments of the last campaign.

“I’m proud of them because the mentality to turn that around and go from a losing team or a drawing team to winning is an incredibly tough thing to do,” he said.

“But they’ve done it really, really well. They’ve handled the occasions, they’ve handled going to grounds where we’ve more or less outnumbered the opposition fans and the expectance levels on us.

“But the way the club is going at the minute we’re in a really good place, on and off the pitch, that’s the pleasing thing.

“Some big clubs have been in this division and they’ve been in here for a number of years. At the minute, we’re going well.”

Shrimpers boss Campbell felt there were pluses in the performance despite the result, although thought their early goal oughtn't to have been disallowed.

“There were a lot of positives,” the former centre-half insisted. “We started off well and we should have had a goal because it shouldn’t have been disallowed when Rob Kiernan scored.

“He’s onside and he’s level. But that’s how it goes sometimes when you’re at the bottom. Sometimes you don’t get the rub of the green.

“The main thing for us was we didn’t give up and we got a goal. They didn’t throw the towel in and that pleased me a lot.

“They gave everything and if we keep that attitude things will change so it will be us getting the rub of the green.

“They worked hard and that’s probably the hardest they’ve worked for some time. That’s the level but we have to build on that now.”

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shortmarine1969 added 18:57 - Oct 26
Was mpresssed by Norris , not loads to do , and maybe some kicking was wayward..but his handing and coming for balls in the area were maybe better than Holy does?? certainly more assured in my view in that area..and with his "shorter" kicks , that could eliminate the long ball to nothing that has been seen in the last two games. But Holy is ours and Norris is a loan so that may have some bearing on who plays also ?. As if we go back up (everything crossed) we get Bart back, as still our keeper.

Suffolkboy added 19:41 - Oct 26
Unsurprisingly PL picks up on the slightly weaker elements ,but emphasises the positive notes and the hope of real development as the weeks go by .
It may well be that AJ ,who IS talented , is taking time to get through the undoubted personal strains associated with the illness his child has suffered : let's all hope he brings more sparkle to his game and lights up the team on the pitch !

TimmyH added 20:11 - Oct 26
hhhmmm 'tough game'...only in respect that new management has come in, not going by their record though, they are dire (Southend is my 'second' team as I live not that far away). Only 1 game won this season but Paul does like to elaborate on the positives.

herfie added 20:34 - Oct 26
Well, he would say all that - would'nt he?! (Tongue firmly in cheek!)

Every right to be pleased with today's result. Will no doubt sit down with his coaching staff and conduct ‘cold light of day' analysis of overall team performance, together with individuals' contributions. Some of which were significantly better than others. Working towards a settled spine, with a midfield/wide players capable of supporting and feeding our key strengths - Norwood and Jackson.

But well done for going 4-4-2, and pairing JN and KJ. More results like today will surely follow.

ITFCsince73 added 21:08 - Oct 26
I can't believe for one minute, Lambo tells each and every player how well there doing and praising each and every performance.
There's 3 or 4 simply under performing who are playing big parts in each and every game.
Yes a great 3 points today, overall a poor performance today, against what was a 2nd string Southend squad, with 12 players missing who would otherwise be in the 18.
Even with there better 12 available, still the weakest squad in L1.

Karlosfandangal added 21:32 - Oct 26

Sell Bart and buy Norris ?

Mark added 22:13 - Oct 26
Such a relief to get the win today. Mixed performances I thought, with Woolfenden, Downes, Jackson and Norwood the best performers.

I hope we can settle the side down a bit and stop making so many changes to the line up each match. On the face of it dropping Holy seemed an unnecessary change, but we got the win so that's the main thing.

thundercat600 added 06:26 - Oct 27
I always go on here to read Lambert analysis of a game, when he does an interview on the telly or radio I don't have a clue what he is talking about

BlueMachines added 07:22 - Oct 27
There is loads of BS here from PL but I get most of it is management rather than believing it. BUT it was 3 games in 7 days not 6.

Also, If he thought Cole couldn't handle it why wasn't he included in the squad rotation policy!? It's these inconsistencies in PL's chatter that I have issue with .

norfolkbluey added 08:10 - Oct 27
Ipswich Town supporters have very high standards and yes PL does talk up the team and their performances buy you wouldn't get better performances with negative and blame game comments from your manager. He uses good psychology to build up this team. I believe he has the right approach to getting the best results. Compare current results with last year and I know it takes a long time to get confidence back after a fall from grace. PL is building a team for the future and we have a part to play in that so doubters keep the faith.

WhoisJimmyJuan added 08:32 - Oct 27
Yes, I agree with much of these comments. PL's spin is irritating at times, but I get why he does it. I also think he is a relieved man. The pressure was mounting so the result was crucial after 2 inexplicably poor performances. He has to get this season right.

sirburley added 10:09 - Oct 27
What is wrong with some of you lot?? of the league, playing good football, and my club is back and you're still moaning!...give the guy a break ffs....

WhoisJimmyJuan added 12:12 - Oct 27
Sirburley. The only person who sounds like there is something wrong with them is arguably yourself. I see nothing in the preceding comments which are irrational. Some are a little pessimistic perhaps but that is understandable given recent history.

Carberry added 12:53 - Oct 27
Couldn't help having a dig could he. He almost had a free hit last season because of the dire situation when he took over but now it is different because the pressure is on him and he doesn't handle it particularly well. Make a promise to yourself Paul, have a week off from flattering the supporters and telling us how big the club is, just get on with the job and when people are concerned we have lost 2 in a row just explain what's happening without getting the chip on your shoulder out.

sirburley added 13:15 - Oct 27
Whoisjimmyjuan there's being pessimistic and there's blatant moaning ...some of you guys prefer the latter...for the first time in a long time I'm enjoying Saturday afternoons...get over it pep guardiola ain't coming here...

Barty added 09:28 - Oct 28
Potential banana skin avoided. Good performance and result. So glad to see 4-4-2 formation. Lets keep it up. COYB.

Blue041273 added 11:39 - Oct 28
Jimmyjuan I'm with sirburley on this. If you can't enjoy the ride don't get on it. We haven't had this much fun for many a year! Pessimism is so yesterday! Get on board and enjoy the ride with all its ups and downs.

WhoisJimmyJuan added 18:29 - Oct 28
Blue147321 or whatever number you have. I am enjoying this season. If you read my original comment it was in response to posts about Lambo's spin. My latter point was that I understand why some people are pessimistic given the recent past. I'm not saying they're right; I'm not saying they're wrong. I am defending their right to be pessimistic without being told there is something wrong with them, or that they shouldn't get on the ride as you say. I personally am cautiously optimistic.

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