‘If they perform like that again they won’t play, simple as that’ Lambert’s warning ahead of Lincoln trip
- Credit: PA
Paul Lambert has vowed to give his Ipswich Town players ‘the benefit of the doubt’ and not make radical changes for this weekend’s visit to Lincoln City.
The Blues’ unbeaten start to the League One season came to an abrupt end at Doncaster on Tuesday night, with the 4-1 loss coming on a night where individual errors cost Town dearly.
Consistency in selection had been key to Town’s impressive start, prior to the loss at the Keepmoat Stadium, meaning Lambert isn’t going to make wholesale changes and give the likes of Tomas Holy and Toto Nsiala a chance to redeem themselves at Sincil Bank.
The Town boss did warn, though, that a repeat performance could cost members of his side their places.
“I’ve said to the guys that because they’ve played that well in all the games but then not so good in one, I might give you the benefit of the doubt,” Lambert said. “But then if you mess up again then maybe you’ll be out – they know that.
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“The guys know my thoughts on what we did well and what we didn’t do so well, but I’d be crazy to make wholesale changes based on one half of football.
“Everybody has an off day – nobody wants to, but they do – but you don’t want to do it again.
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“The players know it wasn’t good enough, the second half especially, and get where I’m coming from.
“If you perform like that again as an individual then you won’t play. Simple as that.”
Lambert knows the likes of David Cornell and Luke Woolfenden will be keen to get their first taste of league action this season.
“The players not in the side understand how things are but they also know that performances like that can’t happen again,” Lambert said. “If it does, then the opportunity comes.
“It’s up to individuals to make sure they can stay in the team, or else you’ll maybe find yourself sitting with me on the bench. That’s the reality of it and I don’t want to hide anything from the guys because they all know the situation.
“Players like (Luke) Woolfenden, (David) Cornell and (Mark McGuinness) as well will all be wanting to play games and you think they maybe need a chance. Once they’re in there they’ll have the pressure on them and it’ll be up to them to stay in the team.”
Lambert and his staff will again assess veteran left-back Stephen Ward ahead of this game, with the 35-year-old still out with a troublesome Achilles problem.
If the Irishman is not good to go, Myles Kenlock is likely to continue on the left of the Ipswich defence.