Paul Lambert tips old club Norwich City to fight it out for Championship promotion
- Credit: PA
Norwich City's double promotion-winning ex-manager Paul Lambert is tipping Alex Neil to lead the Canaries back to the Premier League.
Lambert has been out of work since cutting short a brief stint at Blackburn last season, but the City Hall of Famer feels Neil has the experience in his squad to build on a positive start to the new campaign.
The likes of Russell Martin and Wes Hoolahan flourished under Lambert in a surge from the depths of League One to the Premier League before the Scot opted to join Aston Villa in 2012. Hoolahan has been earning rave reviews for club and country in recent times and Lambert feels there is plenty of miles left on the clock for the Republic of Ireland international.
'I still think they have one of the best players in the division in Hoolahan,' he said. 'I think he is different and I think he can make things happen. People like Russell Martin have been over the course before. John Ruddy is there, Jonny Howson - they have got a really good side and it is a great club and once the fans are on their side it takes a good team to go to Norwich and beat then.
'So, you still expect Norwich to be up there and Alex Neil has done a great job there since he has been there. I think the secret for Norwich is going back up straight away.'
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Lambert, speaking to Sky Sports earlier this week, also backed Steve Bruce as the right man to take over at Villa Park. The former Norwich City centre-back was officially unveiled as Roberto Di Matteo's successor yesterday following a poor start to the season for one of City's relegated rivals. Lambert himself endured a torrid time in the West Midlands under former owner Randy Lerner.
'I would never go back,' he said. 'Steve Bruce is a brilliant candidate for it, for what he has done.'
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