‘You always need that fear of not playing’ – Lambert on his Tinkerman tactics
- Credit: Picture: Steve Waller
Ipswich Town manager Paul Lambert says squad rotation motivates his players with ‘the fear of not playing’.
The Blues boss has used 27 players in 11 games across all competitions, with midfield duo Flynn Downes and Cole Skuse the only two to have started every league game thus far.
And Lambert, who keeps talking about his players needing to 'sacrifice the me for the we', is likely to freshen up his team again for tomorrow afternoon's visit of Tranmere to Portman Road.
"Whatever team I play, they seem to take to it," said the Town boss. "It's the only way you win titles and can be successful.
"You always need that fear of not playing. It's a great thing to have because you'll never stop looking over your shoulder.
"If you are set in stone then you can become complacent, which is dangerous. In my own career there were people who wanted to take my place and I always wanted to make sure I stayed in.
"The way the modern game is, especially in a league like this where you can play so many games with the cup competitions, you need everybody fit and ready to go without an excuse."
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Captain Luke Chambers, a virtual ever-present during his previous six seasons at the club, was rested for the 2-1 home win over AFC Wimbledon last month.
"It was hard to be watching, not playing. I'm not used to that," he said.
"At the end of the day the manager is the manager. He picks the team and he's got a very, very good squad that is the envy of the league. He's got two players for every position.
"We all know the score. I understand the games will come thick and fast. I don't like being rotated though and hopefully it doesn't happen for me.
"I'm fit enough, I'm strong enough and I've proven over the last few years that I can play 46-50 games in a season.
"But at the end of the day I will do whatever is required for this team to be successful."
He added: "If you're keeping five clean sheets in a row you can say 'not this week gaffer, I've got another game in me'.
"We've got a good relationship. It is what it is. If I'm rested then I won't be happy, and he'll understand that.
"If my stats drop or the fitness coaches tell him I need a rest then so be it... But I don't need a rest!"