Manchester United top of Paul Lambert’s agenda in Norwich City’s FA Cup fifth-round week
Patching up injured bodies is Paul Lambert's immediate priority this week – not plotting Leicester's FA Cup downfall.
Norwich City travelled to Swansea minus injured centre-backs Zak Whitbread and Dani Ayala (both hamstrings) after their early Bolton exits the previous weekend.
Adam Drury (groin) and Kyle Naughton (knee) sustained fresh knocks at the Liberty with Elliott Bennett and Elliott Ward also suffering towards the end of a gruelling battle.
Lambert will rely on his medical staff working overtime over the coming days for what he makes no apologies is top of his list – Manchester United's pending Premier League visit later this month.
'I'll see how this week goes but it gives us respite and we only have that small team the following week in Manchester United,' he said. 'Manchester United is probably the priority. Adam had a bit of a groin. Bennett just got a knock in a block tackle, but the good thing is now we have a bit of respite before we play Manchester United.
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'Wardy came across to the bench towards the end and he was feeling a bit sore, but he had to stay out there.
'Kyle Naughton was on his last legs as well but it speaks volumes that we could carry it through. He just got a bang at the side of his knee so we'll see how he is.'
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Ward turned in a masterful display on his first Premier League outing of the season following a long term knee injury. The centre back denied Danny Graham a certain second prior to the interval before a decisive role in Norwich's equaliser with an acrobatic hook despatched by Grant Holt.
'I thought he was colossal, I really did,' said Lambert. 'For his first game back since July he was fantastic. He was terrific, he really was. It has been a long road for him to get back. Grant was fantastic, as were the team, so it would be unfair to single out one individual. I thought he was terrific against Bolton and here again. We came with a gameplan and the lads certainly did that.
'Collectively, I thought we were terrific in all departments. We defended strongly. I keep hearing about lower league players but I think you have to disregard that and give them a bit of credit.'