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Lambert: I Protected Randy Lerner at Villa For a Long Time, I Can't Do That Again
Wednesday, 17th Feb 2021 12:26

Boss Paul Lambert says he can’t repeat his Aston Villa experience where he feels he protected owner Randy Lerner at Town, adding that he believes the Blue Action members who took part in Monday’s training ground demonstration weren’t “true Ipswich fans”.

Under-fire Lambert spoke on talkSPORT regarding Monday’s protest which saw training suspended for 10 minutes after a flare led to some signage catching fire.

“It was what you can imagine, if you don’t get results, the pressure comes and it comes and it’s normal,” he said.

“The scenes at the training ground the other day, I don’t think it was true Ipswich fans, I think that’s one thing to say. I don’t think that’s the way it should have been dealt with or anything like that.

“We had a young team out last night, we were actually training against a younger team and it’s probably the first time they’ve probably seen things like that and were wondering what’s actually going on, what football is about.

“In a way it can be a good thing for them because they can see the pitfalls of football if things don’t go right for their own careers, they can see a lot of stuff there. But morally it was wrong what they did, but, as I say, I don’t class them as real Ipswich fans.”

Explaining further, he added: “We were training and we were doing shape work the day before the game. It was behind the goal and I didn’t really know about it until I could smell smoke and I thought somebody must be burning something here.

“And I turned around and I’ve seen the flags and the flares and these sorts of thing. It’s never nice, it doesn’t matter how old you are, but we had a lot of young players playing and it might have been their first time experiencing that.

“But, as I said before, I don’t class them as Ipswich fans. I thought it was wrong, what actually happened.”

Reflecting on how the season has progressed and having to use a lot of young players before Christmas, he said: “At one stage of the season we had 10 lads out injured and we were playing academy kids in there. I think that gets swept under the carpet because there were a lot of injuries to bigger players for us, and we found that tough.

“We came through that little period and we got them all back and then the pandemic, we had a few games missing [due to positive Covid tests] so we had to play catch-up.

“You have to adjust to it, I think that’s every manager’s challenge, you have to adjust to things like that. I don’t mind that, if a kid is good enough, you play them, but it’s such a big club that you need a bit of help.”

Asked what’s behind the disharmony at the club which goes back beyond his time as manager, he said: “I think there’s a lot of frustration. The great era with Terry Butcher, who works at the club, who has been great, John Wark, who has been great, Paul Mariner, who has been great. I met Thijssen and Muhren, guys like that. Alan Brazil I’ve spoken to. Great players, what they did for that club has been incredible.

“That was 40 years ago and they’ve got to move on with respect to the history of the club and you have to live up to it. You can’t get away from them because what those lads all achieved.

“But as a football club you have to have a clear plan where you’re going and what you’re doing and structure-wise.

“Marcus Evans has put an incredible amount of money into the football club. I understand that, it’s a hard, hard gig running a football club because of the amount of money they must put in is incredible.

“But you need an infrastructure where everybody at Ipswich Town has to get round a table and say ‘Where are we going here? What are we doing? What’s the infrastructure here?’. Because this needs to stop, this needs to stop.”

Quizzed on whether Evans is open to that, he added: “We have to have dialogue, we have to have a discussion. I’m not going to come here [and criticise him] because he’s always been good with me, he tells me how it is, we have dialogue. But the football club needs him to say what’s going to happen with the structure. I think that’s the way it should be.

“The big thing for me is I did the same at Aston Villa, protected Randy Lerner for a long, long time. It was like a lamb to a slaughter what was happening there.

“I can’t do that again, I can’t go through that again. There’s got to be a structure where everybody gets around a table.

“Everybody’s to blame, everybody, not one person where you can turn around and say you’re blaming that one or that one. Everybody has to look at themselves, look in the mirror and say where it went wrong. And I think that’s the big thing for Ipswich.”

He added: “I’ve not shied away from anything, even the clubs I played with, they were huge clubs with massive success, and the players I’ve played against, the countries I’ve played in and all those sorts of thing.

“I’ve seen what it’s like at the top, I’ve seen how those structures work in football clubs. I’ve taken people from Ipswich over to Dortmund to have a look at it to see how their story went, so it’s not as if I don’t know exactly where it’s fell from. You’re trying to put everything in place but you can only do it so far.”

Photo: Matchday Images

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ChrisFelix added 09:21 - Feb 18
Interesting looking at the next 6 games. I hope im wrong but i expect us to move nearer to the bottom 4 rather than the top 6. None of these games are winnable taking into account our recent form. Unless a move is made to remove Lambert its another season on Division 3

bushhillblue added 10:31 - Feb 18
Bin on the sauce by sound of that rambling pile of crap

Razor added 10:33 - Feb 18
What absolute garbage this coward and fraud speaks----he has got players back fit again,Norwood,Jackson,Hews and Nolan for starters but will not play them.

Whatever the structure is he controls the tactics,picks the team and is supposed to motivate them, so how dare he try to deflect from his own complete incompetence by trying to blame other things or people.

I really can not understanf Evans---the club is bleeding to death before his eyes and he does and says nothing------UNBELIEVABLE!!

TimmyH added 10:37 - Feb 18
Another morning and incredibly Lambert is STILL here!...maybe it's not incredible when you consider that Evans is our owner and gave the shambolic or should I say Lambolic decision to give him a 5 year contract.

IpswichT62OldBoy added 10:41 - Feb 18
BBC sport website has a big piece on Ipswich today, nothing we don't know but interesting reading it as a national issue

brittaniaman added 10:55 - Feb 18
NO Movement from Marcus Evans, so it looks like Lamberk is here to stay ?? The Stubborn man he is will not walk away, even with the Failure Tag around his Neck ?
Marcus Evans will not sack him probably because of the Compensation Package ?? were you there Tuesday Evening EVANS if you were you might have heard the cardboard cut outs BOOING !!!!!
But you are Blessed that there was no Fans in the Stadium ??

Barty added 10:55 - Feb 18
If Lambert stays - its season over and I predict us to finish around 15th. Bring in a new manager and I will feel much more optimistic. Lambert should have gone ages ago - Evans grow a pair and sack the clueless muppet.

Bert added 11:53 - Feb 18
“Ipswich Town FC has announced that Paul Lambert has left the club by mutual consent. Marcus Evans thanked Paul Lambert for ........”. I was up late this morning, has this happened ?


Ipswichbusiness added 13:12 - Feb 18
I would love to see the terms of that infamous contract.

Kirbmeister added 13:14 - Feb 18
I don’t really see what bringing in a new manager now will achieve. This squad is a mid table Div 1 squad. Evans will wait till the end of the season when we can get rid of most of the out of contract players and start again. If you brought Guardiola in he wouldn’t get this lot playing good football.

RegencyBlue added 13:35 - Feb 18
Sorry atti, downvoted you by mistake.

Fat fingers!

blueboy1981 added 13:39 - Feb 18
Lambert is eroding every last bit of foundation of our Club - everything is wrong with the Club, and everyone associated with it, including Supporters, other than himself.
Surely Evans can see it that he has made a horrible mistake in his appointment of such a failure on all fronts.
Lambert your time is up - see if those ‘big Clubs’ you mention every other sentence want you.
We’ll have a collection for your travel - but, hang on it would only be time before they did the same to send you back as ‘unfit for purpose’.
And who could argue with that since you left Norwich ?

Ipswichbusiness added 13:39 - Feb 18
Kirbmeister, I don’t agree. I think that there is enough ability in this squad to be in the top four, it is just badly led.

Bert added 14:46 - Feb 18
I too agree there is enough quality and ability in the squad to be at least top 6. There is however a malaise within the club which has infected the players. Look at the lazy way Dozzell is playing. He has quality and flair but rarely uses it. Saturday was a clear example that when the team is met with a side that presses well, they do not know what to do. That's what the coaches and manager should be teaching them. People lambasted Skuse but to be frank he is needed now as the midfield is lightweight. The stats show that we are passing back more than when Skuse was in the team. Get the coaching right and the players will respond.

StavangerBlue added 15:56 - Feb 18
We have been in decline since ME took over. ME is the common factor.

RK, PJ, MM, PH PL have ALL struggled so does the manager matter? Will a new manager fix our problems? All MEs managers have had poor win %. PH had 6.7% and PJ with 34.9% is the highest. George Burley 45.5% win rate!

PLs comments seem to come from a man bereft of ideas. Working in an organisational structure that he feels, and also appears to everyone else, to be failing unable to change it. Why? Lack of money, lack of authority, lack of flexibility? I do not know but I can guarantee a new manager with ME still owning the club will be groundhog day.


bluelodgeblue added 16:06 - Feb 18
It’s Thursday afternoon and a) still no comment from ME, and B) Shambert is suu to in place! Laughable!

bluelodgeblue added 16:07 - Feb 18

stiggytrunk1955 added 16:28 - Feb 18
couldent protect himself against a shower of rain lambert out

stiggytrunk1955 added 16:50 - Feb 18
i played for the 12 th ipswich boys brigade dont make me a good manager lol

Len_Brennan added 18:12 - Feb 18
At this stage we can only commend Marcus Evans on his commitment to saving the club the money that would be paid out in settlement upon sacking Lambert.
I can see no reason for the man to still be in the job, bar a strategy of constructive dismissal from the owner, who is convinced that Lambert's mental health will cause him to give in & quit, before he gives in & sacks him.

bingboast added 18:21 - Feb 18
How many of the supporters on here are millionaires? Who has £80m to buy out Evans? what is the point of keep slating Evans, there is no one who will buy him out, lets be realistic. He was told to get rid of MCarthy, he was told to get rid of Paul Jewel, he was told to get rid of Paul Hurst, who told him to employ these inturn?? The fans on here, will they accept their responsabilities?No. they will blame everyone else.

Len_Brennan added 18:38 - Feb 18
I think the fact that he had to be told to get rid of all those managers, including Keane, by the fans tells a story in itself. Who told him to employ any of them?
The appointment of Mick was a good one, irrespective of how badly it went at the end, which certainly had lot to do with the restrictive recruitment strategy set out by the owner. All of the others were either poor or disastrous appointments,, having gone through a due diligence & interview process by the owner; how is that on the fans?
He threw money at Keane without any logical purchasing strategy in the expectation that promotion would be assured almost immediately. When that didn't work he brought in Jewel, but denied him money for transfers to build a good squad for the long run, instead pushing a strategy of bringing in old mercenaries on high value, but short term contracts, again assuming that would get us up & then he'd recoup his investment & money with Premier League money. What his motivations beyond that were are questionable. It didn't work & suddenly we're in a whole world of badly run trouble. The rest is a sad history for us all.

warktheline added 20:35 - Feb 18
Well said Len Brennan !
@bingboast, what a narrow mind you have ! Very disturbing !🤣

IpswichT62OldBoy added 20:46 - Feb 18
Nice clear synopsis Len, seems a reasonable formulation to me.

Facefacts added 21:39 - Feb 18
Incoherent from Lambert. His position can't be defended. The worst manager ever and we have to put up with him for multiple years. Why didn't the facts about Lambert come out before he was appointed? Eg Stephen Warnock on Football Focus. I can't think of another manager who would have taken us downwards so fast as this. The managers who freeze out players without explanation or good reason are the most damaging and toxic to the club. Get rid of Lambert and his staff and we will be wounded but will slowly bounce back. Cowley Cook, Pearson, anyone. Don't care who. This poison must be extricated from the club before season tickets and next season. This season is gone if Evans is banking on Lambert's failure to get into the top 6 is a contractually agreed failure and triggers departure only at the end of the season.

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