Lambert ready to spread the rewards around
Chris LakeyPaul Lambert may show a rare glimpse of his softer side today - if it ensures his players are justly rewarded for their efforts this season. League rules state that the club will receive 23 winner's medals, 18 of which are for players.Chris Lakey
Paul Lambert may show a rare glimpse of his softer side today - if it ensures his players are justly rewarded for their efforts this season.
League rules state that the club will receive 23 winner's medals, 18 of which are for players. City will decide who receives a medal, but they can request extra ones, as long as the players have made 11 appearances.
A quick look through the City squad reveals 20 players with 11 or more appearances to their name - but there are one or two noticeable absentees who could miss out.
On-loan striker Stephen Elliott has appeared nine times and, if he features over the next two games, would reach 11. But Paul McVeigh - whose total career appearances with the Canaries currently stands at 245 - has made just eight appearances and could miss out, despite having been a regular member of the City bench this season.
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Matt Gill and Luke Daley both fall below the 11-game level, while Declan Rudd has six appearances to his name - not an unusual position for a back-up keeper.
All is not lost, with the Football League likely to listen to submissions in exceptional circumstances.
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Lambert says he may make changes for today's trip to Bristol Rovers and for the finale at home to Carlisle next weekend - and the medal distribution is at the back of his mind.
Lambert said: 'Would sentimental value come into my head? In a way it might do because lads have travelled with us all over the place and sat on the bench for a long time and it's not easy.
'Yes, I might drop my guard for a split second.'
However, Lambert doesn't expect his players to do anything of the sort: neither side has anything material to fight for, but the City boss says his players won't let down the travelling army of City fans by failing to show up for the last trip of a record-breaking away campaign.
'I want to win,' he said. 'Whatever team I pick hopefully will go and win them.
'It will never get in to my head that whatever team I pick will take it easy because they have done what they've done. We have nearly 2,000 going and we have to do it right.
'We will do our best to win the game. Bristol Rovers is a hard place to go and they will want to end on a high. their fans will come out in numbers, but we have done what we set out to do and we have to try and win the game.'
For Lambert, it's been a week of congratulatory messages from his friends within football - but little time to reflect on his achievement.
'I never really sit and think of the different scenarios that have happened - once it's all done and dusted I will think we've done alright,' he said.