‘James needs to show me what he can do’ - Lambert on Norwood’s Town future as Swindon show loan interest
- Credit: Archant
Ipswich Town boss Paul Lambert has challenged striker James Norwood to prove his worth at Portman Road amid further links with a move away.
The striker has yet to kick a ball in pre-season as he continues his recovery from a groin problem, which hampered him significantly during a debut season which yielded 11 goals.
He is the subject of interest from Fleetwood, Dundee United and now Swindon Town, who have been linked by The Sun in a report which says the Robins would like to bring him in on loan. Those reports are understood to be correct, although the Blues are not interested in allowing the former Tranmere man to leave the club on loan.
But when Lambert was asked about Norwood following Saturday’s friendly at Tottenham, the Town boss stressed he wants to see his striker rediscover his form in Ipswich blue.
“I don’t know about Dundee United but could they afford him? I don’t think so,” Lambert said.
“James needs to show me what he can do to get back into the team and get back to doing what he did at Tranmere. If he does that then he’s got another chance here to go and perform the way he can do.
“He’s a goal scorer, the lad, but he has to get himself fit which is important.”
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When asked if Norwood is still firmly part of his plan, Lambert said: “Yeah, yeah. He had an unfortunate time with injury and also went off the boil, like all of us did.”
It’s understood any potential interest from Dundee United relates to the possible departure of Lawrence Shankland from the Scottish top flight club, with French side Guingamp said to be considering a £2.5m offer.
Swindon are in the market for a new central striker following the departure of leading scorer Eoin Doyle, who joined Bolton on a free transfer earlier this summer. The League Two champions also lost their second leaing scorer, after Jerry Yates joined Blackpool from Rotherham following his loan at the County Ground.
Norwood was at Tottenham on Saturday to watch his side in action and could return to full training on Monday, with an outside chance of an appearance off the bench against West Ham on Tuesday.