Massive win for Norwich City, says Lambert
Paul Lambert hailed a 'massive' night for Norwich City after the 2-1 over Nottingham Forest.
'I am delighted because Nottingham Forest are a very good side,' he said. It's massive, it really was. Nottingham Forest are a top team, the way they play the game and it is a huge win which puts us into second.
'They are as good a team that has been down here, a very good side.
'The result was as big a result I think here as what we have had. The performance was great considering the fatigue that is already there, with the amount of games we have had and I am delighted. They have been brilliant, absolutely brilliant for me.
'We hung in there after going a goal down and I thought we played exceptionally well at times.'
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City went behind early on when keeper Ruddy's clearance hit Nathan Tyson and looped in, but Lambert refused to attach any blame to his keeper.
'John Ruddy, in the cold light of day, has been brilliant for us,' said the City boss. 'He has saved us many times before in games. Yes, he will be disappointed with the goal, but I'm not going to blame him. He may have done a bit better with the kick, but the lad shut him down very well.'
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Pre-match talk had centred around Grant Holt's hamstring problem, picked up during the midweek draw at Watford, but the City skipper showed all his talismanic qualities with a superb header equaliser on 11 minutes.
'I thought he was brilliant,' said Lambert. 'I thought he was the best player on the pitch with his hold-up play and his header was a terrific goal. I thought he was unplayable at times.'
Lambert said he knew at 10am yesterday that Holt would be available – and confirmed that there was no question that he was anything but 100pc fit for the challenge.
'As I said to him in there, not many lads would have played with it, but the character and the lad he is, he has been great,' said Lambert.
Holt turned provider eight minutes before half-time when he set up Andrew Surman for the equaliser.
'I think he is a top player, Andrew, for somebody as young as he is – we tend to forget that,' said Lambert. 'He is an elegant footballer and he has got an eye for a pass and as you have seen tonight, he knows where the goal is.'
City now have an extra day's rest before resuming their challenge at local rivals Ipswich next Thursday – although Lambert admitted the strain of playing at Swansea last Saturday, Watford on Tuesday and then again last night, was taking its toll. He said: 'I think asking us to play Saturday, Tuesday, Friday is a big, big call. We don't have the biggest of squads as it is. One or two injuries didn't help us but to play three games in that short space of time is very, very hard and the fatigue in the lads is pretty high at the minute.
'I think it is ridiculous asking teams to play this amount of games in April – seven games in a month when you only have about three in March.
'I know the effort they have give me, I know what they have done for me. I know what they have given that crowd.'