Lambert: Vincent-Young Doing Well But Won't Be Rushed
Friday, 11th Sep 2020 12:57
Town boss Paul Lambert says Kane Vincent-Young will miss Sunday’s live-on-Sky behind-closed-doors League One opener against Wigan Athletic at Portman Road but says the right-back is making progress as he recovers from an achilles problem and he’ll “see how he is next week”.
“Kane will still be out,” Lambert confirmed. "It’s a dangerous area, the achilles, that you don’t want to see anything happen to.
“Luke Chambers has been in and has been fantastic for us there at right-back. His use of the ball has been exceptional.
“We can’t rush him back, knowing that injury. He’s doing well, he’s doing alright, so hopefully we’ll see how he is next week.”
Lambert hints that Aaron Drinan will again get the nod up front with James Norwood and Oli Hawkins still short on fitness.
Norwood spent much of pre-season continuing his rehabilitation after his groin operation, while Hawkins started training late after joining the Blues having ended 2019/20 in July when his former club Portsmouth were beaten in the play-offs.
“James, obviously because of his injury and the time we lost last season, he’s not played too much football,” Lambert said.
“Oli, I think is ahead of him by not really having had too many injuries. We’ll see those two guys are this morning.”
Regarding Drinan, who made his senior debut in the 3-0 win against Bristol Rovers last weekend, he added: “The biggest compliment I can give Aaron is that the rest of the lads have really taken to him. I think they realise that his workmate, his enthusiasm for the game and his all-round personality are really, really good.
“He’s deserved it and he’s in there on merit. He’s played ever so well and it’s up to him how he keeps progressing with a mindset and not get too far ahead of himself, I think that’s important. He’s settled in great.”
Corrie Ndaba, who has made his debut and then his full debut over the last week, is a doubt having suffered a dead leg late on against Arsenal’s U21s on Tuesday, however, there is better news regarding the man the Irish youngster replaced just before kick-off, Toto Nsiala, the D Congo international having felt his hamstring.
“We’ve got to watch that, that it doesn’t bleed too much, I think he’ll be a doubt,” Lambert said of Ndaba.
"Toto I think will be OK, that was a precautionary one where we pulled him out in the warm-up. We’ll see how he is this morning, but hopefully he’ll be OK.”
After a tough couple of years since he signed from Shrewsbury during Paul Hurst’s short spell as manager, Lambert says the 28-year-old has shown some character to get himself back in the team with his time at Portman Road appearing over when he joined Bolton on loan in January.
“He started the season really well, he played really well in pre-season, I thought he did excellent against Bristol Rovers,” the Blues boss said.
"And it takes a big player to have those disappointments in the last couple of years and then to come back again, that shows a little bit of strength in his mindset.
“And he’s there on merit, he’s not there because it’s a gift, he’s there because he played well in pre-season and he played well against Bristol Rovers. He set himself a standard for me and he’s got to keep his place. But regarding playing, he’s playing on merit.
James Wilson came on to the bench against Arsenal’s U21s, does Lambert believe the former Sheffield United and Lincoln man would be fit enough to play 90 minutes if required, his pre-season having been hampered by a calf injury?
"Yes, I don't see a problem with Willo's fitness, I had a chat with him the other day, and I told him I don't think you've done enough for me to merit starting, so he understood it.
"As I said before, I'll be totally honest with the guys why they're not playing. Willo came in last year and did well for us, but that was last year, and it's now that you have to perform. He'll get a chance at some point I'm sure, and it's up to him to take it like everybody else.”
Lambert was at pains to point out that it was nothing to do with the Welshman’s attitude: "No, his attitude has been totally fine, he does well in training it's just the games as well.
"But you've got to remember he had an injury as well that kept him out of a couple of games, West Ham and Tottenham, so his first real game was the one against Cambridge. That might [be a factor], but for me, Luke Woolfenden and Toto are playing really well, so they started the Bristol Rovers game.”
Regarding striker Kayden Jackson, who has been suffering with a groin problem, and midfielder Cole Skuse, who picked up a knee injury prior to the Cambridge friendly, he added: "Kayden is doing OK at the minute, he was jogging the other day, which was a good sign.
"Cole got an injection on his knee, and I think next week he'll maybe start to train, so we just have to wait and see how they are. But I think the two of them are doing OK."
Lambert says he knows which of his keepers, Tomas Holy and David Cornell, will get the nod on Sunday but was giving nothing away at his morning press conference.
"I know who will start, and the guys will know themselves shortly,” he said. "I think the two of them have done really well, Tomas did really well against Bristol Rovers, and I think David did really well on Tuesday, his distribution was great.
"So, I'm really happy with the two of them and to be fair to those two, they haven't trained as much as the outfield guys just because of Tomas's injury, and because David came in a bit later.
“Which one will start? Paul Cooper, that's who's in goal. John Wark is right side as well, just to let you know!”
Forward Armando Dobra and keeper Adam Przybek are back with the squad after U21 international duty with Albania and Wales.
Photo: Matchday Images
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