Lambert - Age is not key factor

Canaries boss Paul Lambert says there are no age restrictions on his transfer policy. Lambert has always stressed the demand for 'hunger' among his players – a facet he believes has been crucial to City's success under his guidance for the past two seasons.

The Scot is entering the uncharted territory of Premier League football with a squad of players who, for the most part, are experienced Football League campaigners, and admits that as long as he fulfils Lambert's most important criteria there could be room for an experienced, older head in his plans.

'There might well be,' said Lambert who, at 41, is the third youngest manager in the top flight behind Swansea's Brendan Rodgers and Wigan's Roberto Martinez.

'I think when I say when people are hungry, you can get a lad of 30 who is hungry, a lad at 31 who is hungry, and who wants to do well.

'I think that's where it can get a bit lost in translation. Players that are hungry don't need to be 21 or 22. If I think it is right then I will look at them – if you get experienced lads who want to keep doing well.'


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While Lambert's signings at Carrow Road have tended to be of players in their 20s, Lambert says hunger can manifest itself at any age – citing Roy Keane and Adam Drury as examples.

'You can take Roy Keane for instance,' he said. 'No matter if Roy Keane was on X amount of money when he started out or what he was on at Manchester United, you would still get the same performances. He was an absolute top, top pro – that is the difference.

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'If you look at a lesser scale you can look at Adam Drury. I think Adam Drury plays the game the same now as he did when he first started out.

'It's if they still have that desire to do it. What I mean by that is I don't want people coming here thinking it is little old Norwich and it is a lovely place to live, great area – that is not what I am looking for.

'You want people here who want to achieve something.'

'There are some areas that need strengthening more than others,' he said. 'If think it is going to improve the actual team or the squad then I will look at it.'

Players report for training in early July, and Lambert is confident they will be in good shape to hit the ground running.

'I think they know the magnitude of it, they know what I expect and I have no worries about any of them,' he said. 'I have no worries they won't come back in good shape.

'I think it is too big. This is too big for us not to be ready. I think it is the best league in the world that you are going to play in, you are up against the best players and if you come back and you're not ready for that then there is only one person to blame.

'It ain't going to get any bigger than this - we are right in it now, that is the bottom line, there is no room for error. We will try everything we can to do okay in it.'

'It's if they still have that desire to do it. What I mean by that is I don't want people coming here thinking it is little old Norwich and it is a lovely place to live, great area – that is not what I am looking for.

'You want people here who want to achieve something.'

'There are some areas that need strengthening more than others,' he said. 'If think it is going to improve the actual team or the squad then I will look at it.'

Players report for training in early July, and Lambert is confident they will be in good shape to hit the ground running.

'I think they know the magnitude of it, they know what I expect and I have no worries about any of them,' he said. 'I have no worries they won't come back in good shape.

'I think it is too big. This is too big for us not to be ready. I think it is the best league in the world that you are going to play in, you are up against the best players and if you come back and you're not ready for that then there is only one person to blame.

'It ain't going to get any bigger than this – we are right in it now, that is the bottom line, there is no room for error. We will try everything we can to do okay in it.'

• Lambert's signings:

Leon Barnett, age now 25 (age when signed 24)

Andrew Crofts 27 (25)

Rob Edwards 28 (28)

Stephen Elliott 27 (26)

Fraser Forster 23 (21)

David Fox 27 (26)

Simeon Jackson 24 (23)

Oli Johnson 23 (22)

Henri Lansbury 20 (20)

Russell Martin 25 (23)

Anthony McNamee 27 (26)

Steve Morison 27 (27)

Dani Pacheco 20 (20)

Michael Rose 28 (27)

John Ruddy 24 (23)

Steven Smith 26 (25)

Andrew Surman 24 (23)

Marc Tierney 25 (25)

James Vaughan 22 (22)

Sam Vokes 21 (21)

Elliott Ward 26 (25)

Zak Whitbread 27 (26)

Aaron Wilbraham 31 (31)

• Average signing age: 24 years 4 months.

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