‘There’s a lot of confidence’ – Lambert says Town will try and get on the front against Stoke
- Credit: Picture: Steve Waller
Ipswich Town manager Paul Lambert says his team are full of confidence heading into tomorrow’s game with Stoke City at Portman Road.
Following a largely flat January, the Blues have produced two performances full of positivity and passion at the start of February.
Lambert’s men can count themselves very unfortunate to have lost a fiery East Anglian derby by a score of 3-0 at high-flying Norwich City last Sunday, then left the field to rapturous applause following Wednesday night’s high energy 1-1 home draw with play-off chasing Derby County.
The Blues are 10 points adrift of safety at the foot of the Championship table with 14 games to go.
Pre-season promotion favourites Stoke, who replaced manager Gary Rowett with Nathan Jones at the start of January, arrive in Suffolk placed 17th in the standings having won just one of their last 11 games in all competitions.
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“I’m proud of the team,” said Lambert, who couldn’t prevent Stoke being relegated from the Premier League during his four months in charge last season.
“You can’t always predict a result but what you can try and influence is being on the front foot. We play really high tempo football if we can. For anybody coming here we have to make it really difficult.”
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He continued: “There’s a lot of confidence here. We’ve got a lot of confidence. Nobody’s sitting in the dressing room or around the training ground feeling down. There’s a lot of confidence.
“You don’t play like this normally when you’re at the bottom of the table. There’s normally a lot of anxiety trying to get that win.
“But the level of performances we’re producing... Honestly, I’m really proud of them. I can’t ask for any more.”
Asked if he felt his side could be a match for anyone playing the way they currently are, Lambert replied: “Yep. I’ve never gone into any game in my life thinking I’m going to lose or I’m going to draw. I always say I can win.
“I had a half-decent career myself as a footballer and as a manager I must be close to about 600 games. I’ve been at the highest level, a low level, never been an egotistic guy, but I’ve got a great inner desire to try and win.
“The support have got it too. When you’ve got that behind you it’s a powerful thing.”