Hutchings: Pressure is on Lambert to deliver
Walsall boss Chris Hutchings warns the pressure is on Paul Lambert to seal a League One promotion slot. Hutchings, however, believes the Canaries recruited one of the best up-and-coming young managers in the game earlier this season following his acrimonious switch from Colchester.
Walsall boss Chris Hutchings warns the pressure is on Paul Lambert to seal a League One promotion slot.
Hutchings, however, believes the Canaries recruited one of the best up-and-coming young managers in the game earlier this season following his acrimonious switch from Colchester.
"He's started his career well and had the opportunity to go to Norwich and you can't knock him from taking it," said Hutchings. "Going from Colchester to Norwich the expectations are slightly different so he knows he's got that on his head and he has to deliver.
"I know him from the circuit, we get on well and have a good chat, I like him a lot. I like the way he plays and gets the best out of people. He's got vast experience from playing in Scotland and Germany and has been to cup finals in Europe. He's got a lot of experience and learnt a lot of cultures of coaching from going to Germany. They were a little ahead of us at the time in terms of different training methods so he's learnt along the way and it's coming to fruition."
But Saddlers' defender Emanuel Smith is confident the hosts can again blunt the division's leading scorers after a Carrow Road shut out in the corresponding league fixture.
"We're the only team to stop them scoring in the league and it will be on their minds," said Smith. "It's always good to take a team by surprise, especially Norwich. Against the better sides we're expected to lose so everyone gives 100pc and puts in big performances. You look for the attackers and if we shut them up and attack them anything can happen if we block their man strikers. There's no reason why we can't win. The performances are there, we just need the goals."
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Smith believes team work will be the key to a League One upset against the leaders.
"We need everyone on their game," he said. "We can't afford to carry anyone and if we work as a unit and keep training well when the game comes we'll be 100 per cent and do our best as a team. When we play against the bigger team if we're too worried to get on the ball it's impossible for people to play well. If we go out there with no fear we can come together as a unit."