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Ipswich Town 1 v 2 Coventry City
FA Cup
Tuesday, 10th December 2019 Kick-off 19:45
Lambert: Worst Performance in My Time Here
Tuesday, 10th Dec 2019 22:44

Town boss Paul Lambert slammed his side’s display as they were beaten 2-1 by Coventry City, describing it as the “worst in [his] time" at the club.

The Blues were two goals behind at the break and never looked like getting back into the game until Luke Garbutt’s 86th minute goal triggered a late flurry which might have led to an underserved leveller.

“It wasn’t good enough, without a doubt that’s the worst in my time here,” he said. “In over a year that’s the worst performance we’ve turned in.

“Never deserved to go through, all credit Coventry, they were better than us, but that’s the worst performance in my time here.

“We were poor, we never turned up. We never got going, never did the basics of the game properly and you can’t mask the fact that we didn’t deserve to go through.

“All credit to Coventry, they were better than us right from the off. We were marginally better in the second half, marginally. But it wasn’t good enough that.”

He admitted that had Town grabbed a late equaliser it would have been a travesty: “I’m pretty sure if you asked [Coventry manager] Mark [Robins], if we’d have got an equaliser it wouldn’t have been deserved.

“I’ve been involved in games where the have been a lot of that, but we didn’t deserve anything, there’s no hiding it. A lot of fans had a really terrible night, it wasn’t good enough.”

What did he put the performance down to? “There are loads of things that can happen. I’ve been involved in games like that myself as a player. You try everything, it doesn’t come off and your touch doesn’t come off, everything you try doesn’t come off.

“It’s just one of those things when it happens. The game wasn’t the way we have been [playing]. The intensity wasn’t the way it has been. It just wasn’t good enough.”

Lambert made eight changes from the team which impressed in the first half as the sides drew 1-1 at St Andrew’s on Saturday. Might the changes of personnel have led to a lack of cohesion?

“It doesn’t matter what system you want to play, three at the back, five at the back, four at the back, two at the back, if you don’t do the basics of the game,” he insisted.

“It doesn’t matter, the principles are the same. If you don’t want to work and you don’t want to run and you don’t want do the basics of the game, it doesn’t matter what system you play.

“You can play like Pep [Guardiola]’s teams, you can play like Arrigo Sacchi’s team, whatever team you want to play, the basics of the game are that you have to be willing to work.

“It doesn’t matter what system you play, if you don’t want to make tackles, if you don’t want to make challenges, if you don’t to fight, it doesn’t matter.

“Systems, the principles of the game of football are that you have to work, you have to run and you have to be aggressive, they’re the principles of the game.

“Systems, you can ask any team, even go to Pep, Jürgen Klopp, the principles are the same. Nothing changes. On the basics of the game we let ourselves down, that’s what’s frustrated me.”

Can players lose the basics of the game through not having played regularly, as was the case with some of the team which started this evening?

“No, because we train at a high intensity,” Lambert added. “We train high, we train really hard, we have a good standard in training, training’s really good.

“Tonight it wasn’t there and, as I said before, it doesn’t matter what system you play, the basics of the game are that you have to work.

“And this football club, with the history that it’s got, before anything else, you have to earn the right, you have to work. The basics are working hard.”

He said he understood fans expressing their frustrations with boos marking the end of he first half and a second-half Alan Judge shot receiving a sarcastic ovation.

“It wasn’t good enough,” he reiterated. “There’s no masking that. I’m not going to come here and say ‘This was the problem we encountered here’ or make excuses, everybody that knows me or understands the game, has realism about the game, that wasn’t good enough.

“And it happens, those performances happen. The lads know it, they know it wasn’t good enough. I think everybody recognises that wasn’t good enough but one performance in over a year like that is, I’m not saying it’s OK, but I understand how it happens.”

Sky Blues boss Robins was delighted with his team's display before the break in which they established their two-goal lead.

“I thought we were brilliant in the first half,” he said. “I have been looking forward to getting a few of the players on the pitch for at the same time and I managed to do that today and from about 10 minutes in we settled down and got a foothold in the game, and I thought we played some really good stuff.

“Not only that, we looked assured and created good opportunities and chance to put them on the back foot and turn the crowd in a good first half performance.

“We got two brilliant goals, well-worked goals and we could have had more.

“Having said that, we could have been 1-0 down after 25 seconds from a big kick from their keeper but we knew as soon as we saw Tomas Holy in goal, that’s the way they play.

“They put you under pressure that way. We tired in the second half when there were some heavy legs.

"The rain didn’t help and the conditions were difficult tonight, especially in the second half, and everyone needs to take care driving home.”

Reflecting on the second half, he added: “I’m pleased with the way we played and dealt with things, although I’m a little disappointed that we didn’t capitalise on things in the second half because we had chances to go and take them and then we dropped a little deeper.

“And that’s why you concede late goals and why we were trying to get them up the pitch again.

"But I thought we defended really well and the two centre-halves were outstanding and headed everything they needed to head, apart from the one that they looped in and it got a flick, and we didn’t deal with it. Otherwise it was a really good win.”

Photo: TWTD

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JCBLUE added 22:54 - Dec 10
Reality at last and you are making too many changes Paul. Please pick the best team and let’s start winning league games again.

Saxonblue74 added 22:55 - Dec 10
An honest assessment, first one foronths!

Bezzer added 22:55 - Dec 10
Same old excuses for the system and player rotation!! Always comparing when he played! YAWN YAWN PL! His managerial credentials are being put on the line and they don’t amount to much to be honest! Since 2017, seriously, who thinks Butcher and Burley would have done worse??

Saxonblue74 added 22:56 - Dec 10
......for months that should read!

WhoisJimmyJuan added 23:06 - Dec 10
Not good enough Mr Lambert. This has been coming and the most logical cause is tinkering. I get the idea of rotating the squad to spread the burden of games but it's now now counter productive. Players who were flying at the start of the season are now shorn of form and confidence. That is a management issue pure and simple. We're out of the FA Cup now; play the youngsters in the other cup thingy but play your best team in all the league games. And that's with TWO strikers. YOU have to turn this around now because we are starting to fail again.

TimmyH added 23:07 - Dec 10
From one of the best halves of football against the same team this season to the worst 90 minutes 3 days later! explain away Paul. Sort of says it all, we are very sporadic in terms of performances which you could argue has been the case the whole season where earlier I felt we've had our share of fortune.

Mark added 23:13 - Dec 10
We have to settle the side down, too many changes. Lambert says systems don't matter, but surely players' familiarity with the system and playing together matter?!

I also wonder if the manager not taking the cup seriously is part of the issue, did we really all give 100% tonight?

Carberry added 23:38 - Dec 10
If you ever manage in the Premier League again, which is very unlikely, then you can make comparisons with the work of those managers. For now you are a League 1 coach who is struggling to be a winner.

oldbri added 23:57 - Dec 10
It was almost like the team weren’t used to playing together.????????

harlingblue added 00:08 - Dec 11
I will overlook PL's ramblings, and pick out a very pertinent part of the quote from the Coventry manager 'I have been looking forward to getting that team on the pitch, even for just 10 minutes'...that's a Manager that knows his real team and formation to achieve?

Lathers added 00:18 - Dec 11
You would have thought that a man who’s at the last chance saloon in terms of his football management career would realise that he needs to play his best team week in week out? It’s all a bit bizarre. And surely Evans must be starting to get twitchy... or maybe not if he still remains a clueless football moron after all these years?

ScottCandage added 02:32 - Dec 11
This was a Cup game, I get the rotation. But we're coming on January. PL, pick your best 11 and let's go to war. We're not gelling and your chopping and changing can be the problem. I get the injuries, but you're changing 8 at a time every match. Figure out your best 11 and let's do this!

Taricco_Fan added 03:33 - Dec 11
Rotation is clearly the number one issue here, but look past that and you see a team that has yet to beat a good side in this division, has laboured to single goal victories over poor sides and has a pretty rubbish home record in the league.

We have a deep squad with quality and dross in equal measure and a manager that is often found wanting as a tactician. There's no settled side and no clear style of play being fostered. No wonder the players often look like a bunch of strangers.

Karlosfandangal added 05:28 - Dec 11
At the end of the day we are the same side from last year which was poor.
We have a new keeper and a new striker and dropped down a league , so I am amazed that some fans think we would be going to be world beaters.

The team we have should make top six in the league.if we do go up then money will need to be spent for a whole new team, as I can see Jackson or Norwood scoring hat full of goals in the Championship, Skuse and Chambers will be a year older and I don’t think will be able to cope at that level. Can’t see Garbutt staying if we don’t go up and Judge looks poor at this level.

It’s great what Lambert has done by getting the fans involved but it’s seems to me that the fans are turning against him by the comments on here.

prebbs007 added 05:59 - Dec 11
Sort it out then by sorting out your own head. Find your vest XI and pick it barring injuries. Partnerships need to be formed. Keeper with his back 4, CB, CM Up front. 4.5.6 changes EVERY game is not healthy. 1 win in 9 games proves we are in danger of wasting our good start, no creativity in midfield, no goal threat. Fix it now before it’s too late !!!

martin587 added 06:13 - Dec 11
Just keep the same team for every game otherwise they play like strangers.If we the supporters can see this why cannot you.I rest my case.

tractorboybig added 06:29 - Dec 11
jackanory...its down to you. and recent form suggests our only way is down

raycrawfordswig added 06:35 - Dec 11
Sort it out.

ArnieM added 06:48 - Dec 11
Stop pissing around with the team Lambert. You’re causing you’re own problems!

Bluebell added 07:13 - Dec 11
How can he complain? As soon as we saw the team, we knew what the outcome would be.

Donacien, Garbutt and Wilson being dropped because they have played a lot of games! We are talking about highly paid, professional footballers. I am sure, if asked, they would say they can manage two games a week.

Unfortunately we have a large squad and Lambert feels they all should be playing. He should take a look at other teams with large squads. They still only pick their best players!

Westy added 07:19 - Dec 11
With eight changes what do you expect Paul. If we don't win on Saturday I really feel the atmosphere could turn.

shakytown added 07:23 - Dec 11
Showing up his weaknesses as a manger is all that is happening. Constant tinkering with the team never works for long as people just do not know what the style of play is and whether they will be part of it and is ultimately devisive for all. also it seems he cannot adjust mid game to what the opposition are doing as proven by Saturdays game when Coventry made a few minor changes at half time and took control of the game.

KiwiBlue2 added 08:22 - Dec 11
While the league is obviously the priority the manner of this defeat is concerning. We need to knuckle down from here on in and establish more continuity in terms of selection for league games and hone our combinations to ensure that we are maximising our effectiveness ........

brittaniaman added 09:32 - Dec 11
Cold Mid Winter Mid Week games not appealing, glad I decided to stay at home

cat added 09:40 - Dec 11
No excuses, we have a team capable of going up whether that’s from automatic promotion or via the play offs. Failure to do so will ultimately be down to one man.

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