Lambert: Midfield Trio Have Done Really, Really Well
Friday, 11th Sep 2020 14:10
Blues manager Paul Lambert has praised midfield trio Andre Dozzell, Teddy Bishop and Jon Nolan for the way they have started the season.
Asked what has impressed him about the way they’ve begun the campaign, Lambert said: “The way we’ve moved the ball, I think the speed of the ball was excellent.
“The rotation has been really good with the three of them. They’re different players to each other but the way they’ve moved and interlinked with each other has been really good.
“The speed of the ball has been a big, big factor for me. I think if you always move the ball quickly, it’s very difficult to get near it. Those three have done really, really well.”
But for having been given a few days off the clear his head, Flynn Downes would have started last week’s match and Lambert says he has plenty of other players also knocking on the door for a place in the side.
“Emyr Huws is there as well, who I think is a really good player,” he said. “Cole Skuse is to come back as well.
"Judgy [Alan Judge] played well there as well, so I’ve got loads of options there, which is why I’ve said that that’s probably the strongest part of the team at the minute, the centre midfield.
“But I can only pick three out of six or seven. But, at this moment, the midfield three is strong.”
Lambert has told his players that if they’ve got the shirt they should keep hold of it: “That’s it, because you could find yourself not in the team again and it’s a long time to come back, depending on how results go and how people are playing.
"If you’re in it at the beginning, I’d make sure I was going to stay in it.”
Asked whether he feels this year could be the year in which Dozzell, now 21 having replicated his father Jason’s achievement of scoring on his debut aged only 16 back in April 2016, finally establishes himself as a first-team regular, he said: "Do you know what, he's got an incredible pass on him, he looks forward at every opportunity, he's got a great pass on him.
“I don't know what happened in years gone by. I know he had a bad injury on his knee, lack of strength maybe played a little bit into that.
“I think the way he's started the season he's been absolutely great for us. Left foot, he can hit a pass, he plays a real forward pass really quickly, he plays around corners really quickly, so I've been delighted with how he's started the season, Andre.
“I had a wee chat with him again at the start of the season about what I thought. He's certainly stepped up that's for sure, but his performance level at this minute is very, very high.
“We were talking the other day and you can probably correct me here if I'm wrong, but I don't know how many games Andre has ever played back to back, it can't be that many.
“So you're going into the unknown with him on that side of it. But talent-wise, football-wise and playing one or two touch – absolutely fantastic, really, really good.
“Is he the most dynamic player? No, but he's got an incredible attribute with that left foot, so I'm really really hoping he will sustain game after game.
“It's the same with Bish as well. Bish hasn't played many games back-to-back, so it's a test for these two guys to play back-to-back games, I think that's going to be a big thing for them this year."
Photo: Matchday Images
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