Cowling reveals how City made approach

COLCHESTER United's owner and chairman, Robbie Cowling, issued the following statement regarding Paul's Lambert's departure from the club, and subsequent appointment as the new manager of Norwich City:“I can confirm that First Team manager Paul Lambert, Assistant Manager Ian Culverhouse and Football Operations Manager Gary Karsa have all left the U's to take up positions at Norwich City.

Carl Marston

COLCHESTER United's owner and chairman, Robbie Cowling, issued the following statement regarding Paul's Lambert's departure from the club, and subsequent appointment as the new manager of Norwich City:

“I can confirm that First Team manager Paul Lambert, Assistant Manager Ian Culverhouse and Football Operations Manager Gary Karsa have all left the U's to take up positions at Norwich City.

“I received a call from Norwich's Chairman, Alan Bowkett on Saturday, about 30 minutes after our win against Yeovil. Alan asked me for permission to appoint Paul Lambert as their manager. I was in our boardroom entertaining the Yeovil directors at the time, so I told Alan that I would call him back later.


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“I was a bit taken aback because it was a strange request at a strange time. We had just finished our game, I was just enjoying our status as league leaders and clubs normally ask permission to interview managers first.

“All over the weekend and for most of yesterday I have had many conversations with Paul Lambert regarding the Norwich request.

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“Although I was extremely disappointed that he wanted my permission to accept their offer, I could also understand his desire to progress to what most would perceive as a bigger club.

“For that reason I agreed to talk with Norwich to see if we could agree reasonable compensation for a manager of Paul's ability.

“I had a number of conversations with Norwich CEO, Dave McNally, which resulted in me turning down Norwich's request for permission to appoint Paul Lambert as their manager.

“The Norwich offer was strange because they insisted that they had decided to offer Paul the position without conducting an interview.

“On Monday morning, Paul was understandably frustrated by the failure of the clubs to reach an agreement and he informed me that he was finding it difficult to focus on his role at Colchester United.

“For that reason I agreed that Norwich could interview Paul but could not offer him employment or in any other way directly or indirectly induce him to breach his contract with Colchester United until they had agreed compensation with us.

“I met again with Paul last night and he handed me his resignation. This morning both Ian and Gary have also provided the club with written notice.

“I have enjoyed working with Paul, Ian and Gary. I have supported them 100% and have been willing to do so because they are a very talented team who have produced excellent results.

“On an upbeat note I am confident that with the help of my fellow directors and staff I will shortly be appointing a new manager who is equally if not more talented than Paul Lambert.”

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