Now Lambert sets his sights on Leeds
Chris LakeyPaul Lambert has set his sights on runaway leaders Leeds United after taking City into the second automatic promotion spot at the expense of former club Wycombe.Chris Lakey
Paul Lambert has set his sights on runaway leaders Leeds United after taking City into the second automatic promotion spot at the expense of former club Wycombe.
City moved ahead of Charlton on goal difference, after the Addicks' game at Walsall was called off, while they trail Leeds by eight points, from one game more.
It's a margin Lambert believes can be closed.
"That's the next step," he said. "They are a good bit away, but all we can try and do is eat away at their lead and that's what we will try and do. It looks healthy.
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"Time will tell. We will keep going, we will try and win every game we possibly can. We have another hard game next Saturday and we go again next Tuesday and then the Colchester game, so we have three games in quick succession, but we are certainly playing well."
The change of positions could give City an important the psychological edge over Charlton.
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"It might well do," said Lambert. "We've been chasing them since I've been in here from day one, so it might well do, but they're a good side, no doubt, Charlton are a really good side - so all we have done is kept the feel-good factor going, kept the winning going and got a crowd behind us that is absolutely vibrant and we will do everything we can to do something."
Lambert insists he is determined to reward City's fans with something tangible to show for their effort come May.
"It's only a table, and tomorrow's news will be fish and chip paper on Monday," he said. "I am not one for looking at it at the minute.
"I know we're doing great, the lads have been colossal for me, as have the crowd. I said when I came if I could get the crowd on my side and get the players on my side we would be a really good side.
"They came a long way to Walsall (last Monday) when the game was called off and they came a long way again and they have been behind us ever since we came here and we will do everything we can to give them success."
Lambert was manager at Wycombe for two years - with Ian Culverhouse and Gary Karsa by his side - before leaving in May, 2008, taking them to the semi-finals of the League Cup and a play-off semi-final - neither of which cut much ice with some home fans.
"It was disappointing, Wycombe's reaction, but that's the nature of the game," he said.
"We did fine when we were here, we did really fine, so it's disappointing, but I am absolutely over the moon with the Norwich crowd. They have been brilliant with me and I will try my utmost to give them something at the end of the season.
"I am only interested in Norwich. My time at Wycombe has gone."
Just as unforgiving at times was home keeper Scott Shearer who almost single-handedly kept City at bay until Korey Smith scored the winner on 77 minutes.
"I thought Scoot Shearer was excellent," said Lambert. "I thought some of the saves he made were terrific, but we kept on going, kept on going and I thought we well deserved the game.
"You are always a bit wary of it but I knew if they kept on going something had to give. Scott was in excellent form, but the lads kept on going and a great never-say-die attitude which has been there in abundance since I've been here, backed by a terrific following which drives us on.
"Without them this place would be empty, and that's no disrespect to Wycombe, but that following there is incredible."
City are likely to wrap up the signing of Russell Martin this week, with the right-back putting in a man of the match performance at Adams Park.
"I thought he was outstanding - going forward and defensively," said Lambert.
"The challenge he had in the first half getting back and then he's getting up and down the line and nearly getting us a couple of goals, so his performance was first class."
But it was Smith who settled the issue, scoring against Wycombe for the second time this season, this time on his return after three games out with a thigh injury.
"He has done great," Lambert added. "You have got to remember he's just an 18-year-old lad who's just learning the game but he has been a big player for me since I came in."