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Lambert on Owner's Backing Ahead of 100th Town Game
Friday, 4th Dec 2020 10:25

Boss Paul Lambert goes into his 100th game in charge of the Blues at Plymouth on Saturday with owner Marcus Evans and general manager of football operations Lee O’Neill having given him their backing, despite fans having called for his head. Lambert spoke about his time at Town and that backing at this morning’s press conference.

Lambert, 51, took charge at Town on Saturday 27th October 2018 and in his 99 games since then has a record of won 31, drew 25, lost 43.

Reflecting on his time at the club, he said: “I’ve loved every day of it. It’s a great club that probably lost its way in a lot of ways and I’m pretty sure people will hold their hands up about where the mistakes are and all those sort of things.

“But it’s a brilliant club and I love being here, I love the way it is. Do I want it to be better and want it to be successful? One hundred per cent, but I’ve loved any minute I’ve been here, it’s certainly been different, that’s for sure.”

The former Scotland international dismissed the suggestion it’s his hardest job in management so far.

“Oh no, this has not been the toughest by any stretch," he insisted. "Where it annoys me is probably the way it’s gone over the years, that annoys me because it’s a really good club.

“But the past, the history the club’s got is massive and it’s incredibly steeped in it, but you’ve got to let that go at times and try and move on into the future.

“OK, it’s not got the money that other teams have got and I think everybody understands that. The young ones are coming through, they need time, but we’re definitely up there.

“It still needs to kick on in my opinion, as I’ve said before, this club needs a helluva lot of TLC.”

If not the toughest, the most challenging? “Do you know what I think? Would I say it's the most challenging? No, because I think every job is. I think every job you're in in football is challenging.

“There are always obstacles you come up against every day and you wake up in the morning and something else went wrong or something has been happening.

“But it's not the most challenging it's just the lack of what's happened here that's what annoys me the most.”
Going forward, is it about controlling the things you can control? “I think you're right. On Wednesday night, we could only control what we had in the game, and we had five kids playing again there [due to injuries].

“Oxford were in the play-offs last year. A good team, an experienced team and we went there and did really well.

“If you go through the two young kids at centre-back, they were helped by Chambo and Wardy.

“We had Jack [Lankester] after the injury situation he's had, Aaron [Drinan] has just come back, [Armando] Dobra has done well for us, Keanan Bennetts is a young guy, so that's the positive. The point is positive. The outside stuff, you're right, you can't control that stuff.”
Asked whether it was nice to receive owner Evans’s backing in his statement last night, Lambert responded:  “As I said to you the other day, I don’t worry or bother about things like that.

“Marcus and I get on really well. Whether I left tomorrow or the next day or whatever it is, I get on well with the guy. There’s not a problem with that. I know football, the way it works.

“But he understands what’s happened here. He’s not a silly guy, he understands what’s happened here and where he’s probably went wrong with a lot of stuff because he’s the custodian of it, so he understands how difficult the role is and what we’re asked to do.

“I get it because I’m at the forefront of it, but I think Marcus recognises how hard a gig it is.”

Lambert says he was aware that Evans and prior to that in a Radio Suffolk interview O’Neill were going to give him their backing.
“Yeah, I speak to Marcus every week really and I see Lee most days here as well,” he said. “As I said before, I can't control anything on the outside.

“I live in my own little bubble really, so I don't get involved in anything at all. I don't do social [media] stuff, I don't do anything like that whatsoever and I've always been like that, it's not just with you guys, I've always been that way inclined.

“Even when I played I never really took to anything somebody saying I've done well or somebody saying I've done no so well.”

Lambert says what they have said publicly is no different to what they have previously told him in private.

“Yes, because you've got to take the glasses off and see what's happened here in the bigger picture and the scheme of it and what's actually happened,” he said.

“The investment or whether it's recruitment or whether it's anything else whatsoever. The sale of guys going out of the club, all those sorts of things.

“Everything has got to be revalued because it's not right for the size of the club what's happened, that's for sure.

“And what we're doing is giving what a lot of people want which is the kids chances to go and play because if we can't invest the next option we've got is to try and get your best kids come through. But those kids need time.”

Evans said he believed the club is on track at the present time and Lambert agrees: “The way it is yes. And the reason I say that is even if I wasn't here and it was somebody else you'd think ‘Well, there's no money at Ipswich, they're blooding the youngsters because that's where they're going to have to do it at this moment’, unless we sold somebody for a lot of money, and then you go and reinvest with that.

“But that's out of my control as well, somebody has to break through and you sell them for a lot of money and say “Thanks very much’, but the way the club is is definitely in a lot better place on the future side of it.”

In his statement Evans implied that won’t be swayed by supporters’ opinions and will judge situations for himself. Lambert agrees that that’s a good thing for a manager to hear from a club owner.

“Yes, as I said before he knows how hard it is and the parameters that he's asked us to work in,” he said.

“Would I like it to be like this? No. Definitely not. Would I like him to say ‘Listen, go and get players that can get us out the division and can help the guys that are here’.

“But I understand the way the world is at the minute the money isn't forthcoming. The club is afloat which is one good point, but I understand where he's coming from.”

Evans also said he felt there are “green shoots of a style [of play] that will reap its rewards in the years ahead”.

“I definitely think the way we're playing is some really good stuff, really good,” Lambert said. “And again, that will progress and it'll get better and better and better and then hopefully you invest in the players that are going to come and help as well.

“That's what you need [for] everything to work. And allied to the guys that are here we need help on that side of it, but Marcus is the leader of that side of it.

“But there's definitely a way we're playing. We're playing a lot better than what we were last year even though we got a few wins last year at the start, but we're playing a lot better.”

Lambert reiterated that he believes that he needs to make some additions to his squad in January: “Without a doubt. Without a doubt, you need help.”

Would it be fair to suggest that progress ought to be further along than merely signs of green shoots by December? Or are things at the stage you anticipated in the summer?

“No, because I did it in the Championship year and we played some incredible football in the Championship with the way we played and we lost points where I don't think we should have lost points,” he said.

“Okay, some of the loan guys went back and then the club had to reboot again and go again.

“We started the season really well last year and probably after January we never kicked on for one reason or another.

“This year the guys know all the patterns of play, they know how to play that way. Okay, the injuries have certainly [not helped], I mean you look at us at the start of the season, they looked brilliant, looking really good.

“And then the injuries hit you. But once those guys come back and get a little bit of help, then you'll not be far off it.”

Asked whether Evans ever talks about style of play and that side of the game, Lambert joked: “Well, he plays centre-back in some training sessions.

“No, he tries to understand it. He doesn't portray that he knows everything about the game or anything like that. He doesn't say ‘I want you to do this and I want you to do that’, he doesn't do anything like that.

“He listens to my views on to his say which is fine because he's obviously the owner of it and we just have a good dialogue with that.”

Meanwhile, Lambert says he's not sure whether the £50 million Premier League rescue package for lower league clubs announced yesterday will be enough.

Asked whether he believes the grant, which is backed up by further cash available for loans, is sufficient, Lambert said: "I’m not sure, I’m really not sure whether £50 million is.

"Is that for this season or is that for right through? In total? If it’s for this season, I’m not so sure, I’m not sure £50 million’s going to cover a massive amount.

“It’ll help without a doubt but I’m not sure. I’ll have to wait and see on that one, I guess.”

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Pencilpete added 10:43 - Dec 4
The one positive i do see with Lambert is that at least he has identified the problems and actually WANTS to put it right.

Everything else hes come up with is cr@p tho and like i say he needs to pull everyone together and stop making enemies of the fans and the local press and make us all part of the solution not part of the problem and when we are bad just admit it, nobody here is stupid and believes we 'dominated' a 0-3 home defeat !! - So do i think theres a way back for him ? at this exact moment yes because we are 5th in the league a good run starting now keeps us up there so there is for me - but having said that he isn't far from being at the point of no return with us all and that normally only ends one way.

Suffolkboy added 10:51 - Dec 4
SB ,that’s an awful awful post in awful language and portrays the total OTT reactions which cannot be either rationalised or justified .
It’s this sort of matter which sadly turns people away from TWTD ,when it just might be a super forum for open exchanges !

BangaloreBlues added 10:52 - Dec 4
...won 31, drew 25, lost 43

Speaks for itself.
Not promotion form by any standards.

Barty added 10:52 - Dec 4
Very very poor win rate [ considering a lot of those games were in League 1 ]

Dolphinblue added 10:59 - Dec 4
Well said Lambo...right man for the job....stringerbell yr post is a disgrace! You have the support of most fans just the noisy 'numbskulls' as per....#emptyvesselsmakethemostnoise

DifferentGravy added 11:04 - Dec 4
Agree PencilPete. If a manager is honest (we can all be a little biased at times) with their assessment and genuinely tryin find solutions to problems....as a fan you have a little more patience and tolerance......

That hasnt been the case with Lambert, he is totally deluded in his post match analysis of games. During our winning run at the beginning of last season, we had a couple of decent performances but otherwise we were incredibly fortunate and were eventually found out. This season is exactly the same. Ive watched almost every game on Ifollow.......screaming at the screen for us to push more players forward, get more players in the box, have more shots, be more direct on occasion. But Lambert refuses to problem solve.....he continues to do the same old thing......which isnt working. Then the injuries came thick n fast and we obviously stood little chance

But as i keep reminding people.....against Oxford (and anot including the keeper).......he played 6 of the players that started the season. So Lambert using injuries justify the losses......well he clearly thought those players were good enough at the season outset. Added to that fact he banged on for most of last season about the need for squad rotation so that that any player could fit in seamlessly and the team would not be effected.


Chrisd added 11:05 - Dec 4
You 'CAN' control the outside stuff PL by setting your teams up to produce decent performances and winning games on the pitch. Both these aspects are becoming few and far between. For someone of his playing and managerial calibre he really does speak a load of BS.

marco5113 added 11:19 - Dec 4
in life the saying goes we learn from our mistakes. last season we were top early in the season. we then fell away as the season progressed . we had injuries last season claiming that was the reason for the slump in form. we failed to beat a top six club.

fast forward to this season and surprise surprise the same is happening. the definition of madness is doing the same thing over an over and expect different results. sorry the same will happen.

so lambert either change your management techniques and excuses or do the right thing and ACCEPT you cannot change the pattern and LEARN from your mistakes or RESIGN.

dirtydingusmagee added 11:29 - Dec 4
Trouble is he said all of that when he arrived, repeated it again when we started in Lge1 and nothing has changed. Evans hasnt changed his stance either. So when things dont change they stagnate. Worryingly he says we have played and do play some incredible football ! incredible can only be used in relation to the ''shots'' and shots on target per game ,that is incredible.IF we are going to be stuck with Lambert [and Evans] they really need to show they are really up for getting back to Championship ,not just happy to loiter in Lge 1. As things are going we will be mid table at Christmas and possibly lower come the end of the season. The form table dosnt look good at all .

marinersmullett added 11:46 - Dec 4
Anyone who thinks lambert does not have performance clauses in his contract is clearly delusional. If we are not in the playoffs at the end of the season I suspect he will go with about a years severance pay. With the current injury situation I can’t see any point sacking him now. Players win games not systems and we are a bit short in the player department at the moment. In the meantime we should try to support the young players rather than put them under more pressure

martin587 added 11:56 - Dec 4
Let’s start with three points tomorrow Paul.

cat added 12:01 - Dec 4
You can use whatever excuses you like Lambert but try defending that terrible record. It’s so poor it’s utterly embarrassing.

PortmanTerrorist added 12:01 - Dec 4
No matter how many injuries we put out a totally credible 11 on Tuesday and had no shots or attacking play whatsoever. The injuries are legitimate excuse for results but we were assured of a pattern of play that all players would know and understand, so how is it we can put out any 11 who were so clueless. Either we lack any ambition or PL is lying and the players on the pitch are simply not League 1 level. For goodness sake, there has barely been one passing move from the team in nearly a month....isn't that down to coaching not quality? The players are culpable (Judge?) but PL and his team are far from innocent and that is why the recent criticism has been justified....if a bit over the top. PL needs to raise his game and demand more than the performance which pleased him so much on Tuesday against a very ordinary, out-of-form, League 1 side.

Cheshire_Blue added 12:22 - Dec 4
More negative uninformed crap.

WhoisJimmyJuan added 12:27 - Dec 4
I agree Pencilpete. He identified the problems correctly and kind of knows what the solution is. He is simply not a good enough manager to achieve it. He has withdrawn into his own hype, bigging up poor performances into "playing incredible stuff" whilst carping on about his own past. I do like the guy, and I wish it had worked out. But it hasn't.

blue86 added 12:59 - Dec 4
The thing with lambert is he talks to fans/reporters like we are thick....... I wish he would be honest when we are crap, and just say it wasnt good enough, we need to improve etc. I would then have more respect for him. The stats wins 31, drawn 25, lost 43 under lambert? come on man that is no bloody good is it? He even said the players know our system and patterns of play, but we are still crap! The trump card as ever are the injuries which I understand to an extent. It just annoys me how he comes across, you could ask him after losing 4 nil to stowmarket reserves and he would say - dear or dear, there were some right good performances, brillyant absolutely brillyant. And that's infuriating!! Please just be honest with us lambert, dont talk to us like we are thick we were here before you, and will be here long after you. I hope things change but fear they wont, but the sad fact is what choice do we have? Us town fans have suffered and deserve more. GET IT SORTED or get out of our club! Rant over.

MonkeyAlan added 13:52 - Dec 4
More bollox. Your record here is awful Lambert. You can't blame injuries for that record. As for saying we have played some great football, well, tapping it around at the back with no forward play or urgency, whilst the opposition just sit back and watch isnt great football, it's cr@p. Lambert clueless, Evans is a muppet and the players are made of glass. Utter utter rubbish from top to bottom.

BettyBlue added 14:10 - Dec 4
Its not about when he goes, its now all about how much Lamberty can fill his boots with ITFC cash.

Happy Christmas greedy guts.

suffolkpunchdrunk added 14:11 - Dec 4
I just wish he would stop sulking, he is the epitome of negativity, constantly contradicting himself and blaming others for his own failings. I want him to stop the arrogance and barefaced lies. If we play poorly he must stop deflecting and take responsibility, it is his team and his tactics. I want him to recognise that our expectations are high and he is under pressure to perform and get results and instead of lashing out at fans he must behave with humility, lighten up, stop being so dour and fractious, just bloody smile once in a while would help. He has a job that so many of us would dream of having, it looks like this job is his for some time to come so he must start to make the most of it, start being positive, start earning his highly paid salary, prove us doubters wrong and get us promoted. That is the bare minimum required. If we are outside the top six at Christmas then he simply has to go.

BettyBlue added 14:14 - Dec 4
Lose at Plymouth he stays, he's waiting for the 1 in 5 games win to say what a great manager he's been and how he's been great at the Big clubs he's been with.

Carberry added 14:30 - Dec 4
There are 2 things he is relying on, firstly the injury situation (nobody asking the question that it may be poor management from within the training staff) and playing youngsters. Most managers believe they get some positivity from fans if the play youngsters who have come through the system, however he sends mixed messages about their responsibility and makes out they are all we have when there are senior players sat on the bench. He talks in riddles and is appearing to ride a rollercoaster of emotions as the pressure rises. And he gets it so easy, the press don't nail him and the supporters have the most patience of any club in the Leagues. He no doubt believes we are really lucky to have him but of course he's trapped and his failures are coming home to haunt him - there's no job at the end of the rainbow. He won't be in the frame to take over from Lennon when he leaves Celtic and that must hurt. It's been an inexorable slide into obscurity - the saddest thing of all is we are in obscurity too. I hear it all the time, 'Ipswich, what division are they in now?' How we have fallen.

norfolkbluey added 14:33 - Dec 4
Nobody can be surprised about his record at this club he's had the same record everywhere he's been since leaving Norwich! This will continue, we have been conned and the only thing he did was initially get the fans going but now that's gone too, so time to go Paul before we go down with you!

DifferentGravy added 15:04 - Dec 4
Cheshire Blue -

The only thing 'uniformed' is the same number of attacking moves, shots, goals and lack of wins.....oh and the same excuses

Dissboyitfc added 16:14 - Dec 4
I can see the headlines on his 200th game in charge, " town look to get back to winning ways in the national league against the divisions lowest placed team who are yet to score and havent managed a clean sheet"

Then i can see Lamberts post match interview, " considering we had a lot of injuries we played well and dominated the ball, and it never looked a penalty from here! Pleased really pleased with how the kids played, lot of credit must go to chambo without him i think we would have lost by more, we werein it right until the final whistle! The lads are gutted in there! Still we have another game coming up and we go again Wednesday.

BettyBlue added 16:38 - Dec 4
100 games and not one at all memorable......

You are the weakest link......

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