Paul Lambert’s Norwich City full value for Premier League double over Swansea

Paul Lambert was convinced he had the personnel to take Swansea on at their own passing game.

The City chief opted to deploy Andrew Surman alongside David Fox from the start, with the attacking talents of Anthony Pilkington and Elliott Bennett harnessed in a creative midfield against opponents feted for their prowess this season in the centre of the park.

Wes Hoolahan was also introduced late on with Lambert showing no propensity to sit on a two-goal lead after Grant Holt's brace and Pilkington's deflected strike during a potent burst second half burst had cancelled out Danny Graham's early opener.

Graham's second from the penalty spot set up a tense finish but Lambert insists his men were full value for a notable league double over the Swans.

'I thought a lot of people believed Swansea were going to beat us but we came down here and played extremely well,' said Lambert. 'I just think we are a really good side. We just have to perform to our maximum to win games.

'There is no magic formula. I think if there were, people would bottle it. Listen, I have good players and lads that actually want to do it. They are a credit to the football club.

'Swansea have been getting plaudits for they way they play the game. I thought we deserved it. I thought from the off the passing was excellent. I thought the enthusiasm to go and press the game was excellent.

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'They beat a terrific team in Arsenal, they drew with Chelsea and Tottenham and Manchester United was the only team to beat them here. I think they are a really good side and I think they pass it well but – I said it in the build up – I think we have a threat. That was evident again.'

Lambert and his coaching team did have to revert to the diamond after Graham's slick goal wrestled the early initiative from the visitors.

'We changed it round a little bit because Swansea got a grip of it after they scored,' he said. 'Which they are entitled to do because they are a really good side, they are at home, and Brendan (Rodgers) has got them playing well.

'They haven't really changed at all from last year with his system or personnel. We just felt we were down a goal at that stage so let's see if we can try and get one ourselves.

'At half-time I told them not to worry because even at 1-0 down we were still in the game. I thought we had given as good as we'd got. The passing was excellent so I wasn't too down-hearted at all.

'Surman should've scored before half-time but in the second half we were terrific. I think Wes should have scored as well to make it 4-1 and that would have been the game dead and buried. When they get the penalty you are hanging on for death.'

Holt's blatant shirt grab on Ashley Williams inside the Norwich penalty area gave Graham the chance to beat John Ruddy as well as capped another eventful afternoon for the Canaries' skipper.

The City number nine was barracked throughout by the home fans but responded in perfect fashion with a quality second half brace. Holt's header drew Norwich level before his bare-chested celebration in front of the away fans after lashing underneath Michel Vorm for his 11th goal of a productive campaign earned him a yellow card.

'I think Grant has had that sort of reaction throughout his career but he has been brilliant for me for the last three seasons,' said Lambert.

'I never actually saw him get booked. It was the fourth official who told me, but that is not a great sight – I would have booked him for that.

'I couldn't see the penalty either because I was sitting down at the time, but if you are pulling people in the box I suppose the referees are quite entitled to give a penalty.'