Lambert says Norwich City can’t afford Mackail-Smith

Paul Lambert has backed City's decision to pull out of the deal to sign Craig Mackail-Smith from Peterborough.

Any hopes of bringing in the Posh hitman were ended on Thursday when chief executive David McNally accused the League One promotion hopefuls of moving the goalposts by upping their price tag.

And Lambert's response at his pre-match press conference at Colney was straight to the point.

'The club can't afford it, end of, that's it,' he said. 'The club can't afford it – that's the way it goes.

'If you can't afford it you can't do anything.'

Lambert refused to speculate on whether the deal might be resurrected in the summer.

'I don't know what's going to happen in the summer, I never look that far forward,' he said. 'There is no point in me looking to the summer when I don't know what's going to happen tomorrow.'

Most Read

The emergency loan window closes on Thursday, with Lambert insisting the prospect of bringing in a new face is no nearer, given the difficulty in finding someone who fits his requirements.

'I can go and get a young one somewhere, but they are very young and at this stage of the season are they going to improve my side the way my side's going? I'm not so sure,' he said.

'I will only bring in people I think can do something. I can bring a name for the sake of bringing somebody in, but I am not going to do it.'

What won't happen is the departure of Grant Holt, despite Sky Sports claiming yesterday that leaders Queens Park Rangers were among a number of clubs 'considering a shock bid'.

There was little evidence to back up the claim, although their website did point out: 'There is no suggestion that Norwich are in any way looking to let Holt go, but they could very well have to fend off some late bids.'

Lambert takes City to Hull today without Aaron Wilbraham, with the striker struggling to shake off a back problem which also kept him out of Monday night's home win over Bristol City, while fellow striker Chris Martin is also absent with a hamstring problem, although Lambert says he is progressing well.