Lambert will not abandon principles
Paul Lambert has urged Norwich fans to strap themselves in for the Championship ride of their lives.
Lambert is refusing to make any bold predictions beyond his side will go all out for a win this afternoon at Swansea's Liberty Stadium to maintain their seemingly inexorable march to the Premier League.
Norwich hold all the aces at present – four points clear of the Swans and Welsh rivals Cardiff in second place with just seven hurdles left to clear – but Lambert's mantra remains constant.
'It's too early to call anything,' he said. 'From our own point of view we have put ourselves in a position to try and do something. Whether we do something we'll have to wait and see. If I knew what was going to happen in the future I swear I would go to the lottery shop and put the winning numbers on.
'We won't be going for a draw. That doesn't enter my head. What does enter my head is that if you can't win the game then make sure you don't lose it. Even if it got to the lost ten or 15 minutes and we are drawing I would still look to go and win the game.
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'You have to go with that mindset, no matter what stage of the game. If it doesn't happen, then make sure you don't lose it. If it doesn't go for us then we are still second in the table, but if you win then it gives you an even bigger bit of daylight.'
Lambert admits the big match occasion still lights his fires.
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'I think the one thing that is similar between playing and managing is you still get that buzz around the games. You get the same adrenaline rush and the same feelings,' he said. 'The only difference is you can't play any more, but I get a lot of pleasure from getting players to run for you, to go that extra yard.
'If lads are willing to do that then it's a great thing to have. I love the pressure. I still get that tense feeling before a game and when it goes, then it is probably the time to stop.
'The management game is a hard, hard job. No two ways about it. It gets harder every given season. You lose a game and people want you out.
'But I think Brendan (Rodgers) is a really nice guy. I met him a couple of times and he has done great with Swansea. It's a hard match, but I think he also knows they will have to play well to beat us.'
Lambert has no fears his men have got caught up in the post-Scunthorpe waves of euphoria. The job is far from complete.
'You could say our performances and winning games creates that but there is a long way to go,' he said. 'The media fuel it as well by saying we are going up and we are four points clear.
'I know what the lads have done. I don't need to be told, I don't need to be reminded. If other people want to go up to the lads and stop them in the street and say, 'you've done it,' I think the players know me long enough that they are pretty sure it's never over until it's over.
'I don't listen to outside influences. I have told you that in the past. I don't think my players are the type of characters who are egotistic or flamboyant.
'They are top players, no doubt, but collectively as a team they also know you need your mate beside you to achieve anything and we haven't yet.'
Lambert insists Norwich remain a work in progress. Reputations are still to be made.
'What annoys me is when people say I have taken players from the lower leagues along with maybe one or two who have joined who have been in the Championship before,' he said. 'What annoys me is these lads are creating names for themselves and they are only young. I know exactly what they have done for me, I know exactly the way they are playing.
'I don't accept if you are saying to me perhaps we can fly under the radar and that other teams around us are more fancied.
'Not when you have 27,000 people coming to watch. The crowd generates the pressure. It doesn't matter who sits in the manager's chair, you should always feel it because of the amount of people who come to watch you.
'I think a lot of people do think we've been in the Championship for years.
'For myself it's new, for the team it's new, for Ian (Culverhouse) and Gary (Karsa) it's new. There is this perception that we should be up there and that is wrong. I don't buy into this nonsense that Norwich should be where they are.
'You have to earn the right whether you are playing Scunthorpe or Swansea or QPR.
'Every game is really, really tough but we have done really fine this season to put ourselves in a position to do something.'