‘I know there are people wanting us to fail’ – Lambert airs frustrations after Town return to winning ways
- Credit: Picture: Steve Waller
Ipswich Town are back up to third in League One following this afternoon’s impressive 4-1 home win against Accrington Stanley. Here’s what the Blues boss had to say about the performance, owner Marcus Evans’ comments and people ‘wanting the club to fail’.
Q: Just what the doctored ordered wasn't it?
A: First half I thought was excellent, really good, it could have been five or six. The first half was what got us the win.
Q: What made the difference today do you think?
A: Even the games we've lost or drawn we've had most of the ball, most of the game, most of the chances. It was just the intensity that dropped and that's going to happen, because they are not used to playing like that every single week. It was a good win.
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Q: You definitely got that intensity back today didn't you?
A: We've dominated games before without getting the break. As I said the other day, we had 73 penalty box entries against Bristol Rovers. Today will have probably been the same, but we were clinical this time. That was the difference.
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We played a different way... As I said before, there's a lot of nonsense said about systems. It's about players.
Q: We saw the centre-backs bombing on today...
A: That's what I'm saying, there's a lot of nonsense. Absolute b******s it is. B******s. It really it. You've got to get it our of your head. Systems don't win games, players do. We work on it one week and win 4-1.
Q: So tell us what you worked on for this game...
A: A different way of playing. It's amazing. Players were great. Really, really good.
Q: By a different way of playing, are we talking about the centre-backs getting forwards?
A: You talk about systems, so you tell me. I'll let you explain it. It's your idea, not the public's. You explain to me the way we played.
Q: Three at the back, wing-backs, three in midfield, two up front...
A: We played four in midfield and I played one off the front two. So how did we play? What happened? How did we score?
Q: We've seen two goals from defenders breaking forwards...
A: You don't need to be a genius to work that out do you?
Q: It was a bit like the way Sheffield United play...
A: Listen, if we get anywhere near how Sheffield United play then we're doing alright.
Q: Your defenders created a lot of opportunities today.
A: They did. Woolfy was excellent.
Q: So that's something you've worked on for the first time this week - the two wide centre-backs looking to contribute more in an attacking sense?
A: Yeah. A couple of days.
Q: Does that bear any correlation to what Marcus Evans has been saying about style of play in today's programme?
A: Marcus wanting us to play silky football, is that what he wants? And then we lose games.
Q: Well he's been talking about style of play.
A: Marcus came up with that system did he? The next game Marcus can sit here. For the next game me and Marcus can swap roles. I'll take that every day of the week! I'll take the yachts, the planes, all the holidays and I'll let him sit here. Listen. I guarantee if the football club gets promoted not playing great football he'll be the first one to jump over the moon.
You've got to try and win. You can play silky, silky, silky and lose. The game is about winning. What do you play professional sport for? I was brought up in an era where I had to win. Thank God I had trophies coming out of my ears. I won the biggest things in Europe, the biggest titles. I know what it is to win. I can look back and see a lot of trophies for sure.
Q: Paul, I thought you'd come bouncing in here today after a win and performance like that. It seems like a bit of frustration might be coming out.
A: I think people want us to fail, without a doubt. The football club is not used to this pressure to win all the time. 'We have to win, we have to win, we have to win'. The guys are not used to it, the guys are young guys, some are experienced, but it's the first time in a long while that the pressure is on to try and do something. There are two different pressures to winning a title and staying in a division. Two totally different things.
Q: Who wants you to fail?
A: I know there are people wanting us to fail. I don't need to name names. I know people want us to fail.
Q: And do you use that as a motivating factor?
A: No. I've got my own feelings and my own mind. I'm absolutely delighted the lads won. We played brilliant football, we looked really, really good with the way we played. The support is absolutely unbelievable, 18 thousand against Accrington. Incredible. The German lads coming over. Absolutely brilliant.
The football club is in a really, really good place.
Q: Unchanged from Wycombe. That's the first time you've done that in the league this season. You said pre-match that your advice to players was to keep the shirt...
A: Try and keep it, yeah. Barring one or two knocks. We've got another game Tuesday (at Oxford). Three points off the top with a game in hand is a bloody good position.
Q: It's about getting that winning feeling back now?
A: Yeah. I don't want to play silky football all the time and lose or draw. I don't want it. I've not been brought up that way. This is not my mantra, to play great, lovely football without having something at the end of it. You have to win. Winning is the main aspect of any professional sport. That's professional sport.
Q: So what do you make of Marcus' comments then? With him talking a lot about style of play, technical football, entertaining the fans... Does that not help you?
A: Marcus has been brilliant, I've always said that. From day one Marcus has been great. Whether he says that or not it doesn't matter to me.
Q: Are you on the same page?
A: No - I can't stand him and he can't stand me! Of course we are. I get on well with him. I fight with him and he fights with me. I say 'that's not good enough' and he says 'that's all I can do'. No problem. We meet in the middle and we try and do the same thing. He's a good guy, he's a good chairman to work under. Do I agree with everything he says? No. Will he agree with everything I say? No.
He can do what he wants - hire, fire, employ, get rid of people. It's his club, it's his money and you have to respect what he wants.
Q: Getting back to today, it must be a big boost to get such a convincing win after a sticky spell?
A: I think it's great. We were always going to lose some games. You lose a couple of games here and, my God, you'd think the world has caved in. It's incredible.
Okay, if people think that, fine. That's why the guys deserve so much credit for today. Accrington were in really good form, John (Coleman) has done really well there and we knew it would be a hard game. The level we played today was very, very good.