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Lambert on Exeter Draw: Regionalised? It's Ludicrous, Absolutely Pathetic
Friday, 6th Dec 2019 11:42

Town boss Paul Lambert has hit out at the Blues being handed a lengthy trip to Exeter City in the regionalised draw for the third round of the Leasing.com Trophy. The draw is regionalised on a north-south basis but not east-west and the journey to St James’ Park is actually further than any of the sides still in the northern section of the competition.

It’s the third time Town have been drawn at Exeter in regionalised draws in 21 years - the League Cup is also drawn on the same basis in the early rounds - while the Blues have also been handed similarly long trips to Torquay and Shrewsbury in seasons past.

“I don’t get it, regionalised?” Lambert said when asked about Thursday night’s draw. “If that’s regionalised then dear oh dear, Glasgow’s nearer.

“I don’t get it. I think it’s a shocker, I really do. I think it’s terrible to ask fans to travel that distance in midweek. It’s ludicrous, absolutely pathetic.”

Reflecting on the game itself, which will be played in the week commencing January 6th, he says it won’t be easy with the Grecians currently fourth in League Two.

“It’s a tough game and I’ll go with the young ones again,” he confirmed. “As I’ve always said it gives them the opportunity and I’ll never know if the young kids are ready or not ready to play.

“So we have to see them, but they have to have time to develop. There’s no point them thinking they’re a ready-made footballer, they’re not.

“There’s going to be so many ups and downs and so many things to take care of, but as I said little bits that show me that I can if they can do it.”

He says there was a buzz on the coach on the way home from London Road after Wednesday's on-penalties victory over Posh.

“The lads were great,” he added. “The way they handled the whole thing and the way the club is opportunity-wise. It’s a good opportunity to be a young player here because you get a chance at it.

“And they’ve never let me down which is great, it’s only a small, small step but what they did the other night was extraordinary, they had no right to win the game and that’s a testament to ourselves.”

Does he believe his youngsters can go all the way to Wembley in the competition? “Nobody knows. As I said before, it doesn’t matter if you’re young, middle-aged or experienced.

"If you can perform and you do go and do well, then it’s great for everybody, but there’s a long way to go in that competition that’s for sure.”

While League One is very much Lambert’s priority and he has admitted he is no fan of the Leasing.com Trophy, he says he still wants to win it.

“If I played you at tiddlywinks, I’d want to beat you,” he said. “It’s not going to change, everyone wants to win something.

“There’s no greater feeling than winning something. I’ve always said that. Winning is the greatest feeling in the world. It takes over everything. It takes over money and materialistic things, winning is a great thing.”

He added: "The league is the most important. The cup games we’re going to try and win and get through them and do as well as we possibly can.

"We’re still in the cups which is great, but the league is obviously the most important thing."

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itfcjoe added 12:15 - Dec 6
Even if it was East-West we could have ended up going to Sunderland or something - if you are an outpost it is always an issue even with regionalised draws

monty_radio added 12:23 - Dec 6
And still more of an issue for Exeter - which is 100+ miles nearer than Glasgow, but we get your drift, Paul.

SouperJim added 12:24 - Dec 6
Play the kids again Lambo, it's great for them

Pilgrimblue added 13:08 - Dec 6
the draw is a joke! We'd probably get a more convenient trip to one of the Northern group sides. Trouble is that the competition hasn't been very well thought through.
Still it gives our youngsters an extra game plus run out for fringe players or those getting over injuries. Just a pain for supporters.

Blue041273 added 13:24 - Dec 6
The Competition is a joke! The clubs involved don’t need it. The costs of putting on these games exceed the revenue earned and the whole thing is rather pointless until you reach the semifinals. And we we don’t need the extra games! To ask players, particularly young players, to travel these distances is pathetic! Peterborough is one thing! Let’s see if the mood is good when they lose to Exeter and hit the M5 at midnight!

afcfee added 14:36 - Dec 6
Why did they put u21 teams in it was a decent trophy before then.

bluebare added 15:06 - Dec 6
It doesn't matter as its an hours flight also we could be down that way on the Saturday if we beat Coventry in the FA cup at Bristol Rovers or Plymouth. So its all good for me in Exmouth

KilburnBlue added 15:22 - Dec 6
If it was divided into East West. That would mean a possible meeting between Exeter & Carlise.

However bad I think this competition is it must be hell on teams like Exeter considering every away game is a journey & a half to get too. But I don't hear them complaining

Les57 added 16:15 - Dec 6
Well I will go totally against what most people appear to be saying.
Our squad is big enough and good enough to play decent teams in both this and the F.A Cup and at the same time introduce a few of the kids into the equation along with helping some senior players back into form or return from injury.
P.L. Has done nothing but moan about this competition and the F.A cup citing the amount of games we have to play. Well he knew that when he took the job. He also has probably the biggest and best squad in the league.
In my opinion he would be better off giving some of the senior players MORE game time as our record lately and performances are not too great. How many shots on goal have we had over the last 3league games, single figure I expect .
Promotion is the priority but at least give the other competitions a little respect.

Oh and by the way these poor overworked players will not travel down on the day of the game, cheer their hearts out and in some cases travel home returning in the early hours only to get up for work at 8am.

The down button is the one on the right hand side.

Linkboy13 added 20:08 - Dec 6
Les57 Good point i thought i was the only person on this site who noticed that we were not creating many chances ,but all those with blue tinted glasses keep saying look at the league table .The way we are dropping points lately we will be lucky to be in the play offs. We need to start picking the strongest team instead of trying to keep everyone happy.

AlanG296 added 22:39 - Dec 6
Lambert does seem to like having a moan about things that are normal part of football. The FL have always split it north/south when regionalising. In fact in all our previous time at this level, we played Exeter in the Third Division SOUTH! There are far more important things he should be worried about, such as our lack of on target goal attempts lately.

markytitfc added 09:05 - Dec 7
Hope we never get to Prem with Lambert and then into europe, everywhere would be too far! Ffs Lambert use tour noddle. Stay down near Bristol after the Rovers game,find somewhere to train and then down to exeter, I have to stay away from home all week, every week to work on a fraction of the salary you lot are on! Reduce tour trvelling time and mileage and stop effing whinging, its boring ne

Linkboy13 added 10:25 - Dec 7
Like a lot of people on here im getting sick and tired of Lambert constantly moaning about playing games of football it's what players do. You never heard Brian Clough moaning when Forrest were playing 3 games a week the year they won the European cup his philosophy was playing was better than training.

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