Rickie Lambert hoping to be relied upon for goals at Cardiff City

Rickie Lambert made his goal-scoring England debut, against Scotland, as recently as August 2013. Pi

Rickie Lambert made his goal-scoring England debut, against Scotland, as recently as August 2013. Picture: Nick Potts/PA - Credit: PA

Rickie Lambert is keen to put a frustrating two seasons behind him to become the main man for Cardiff City this season.

The former England international was prolific for Southampton but the burly 34-year-old striker has scored just four goals in the last two campaigns.

His dream move to boyhood club turned sour and his time with West Brom was equally under-whelming, prompting a late transfer window switch to South Wales, signing a two-year deal.

'That feeling you had in the lower leagues, the hunger you need to win and even earn wages, has never left me,' said Lambert, who was 30 before he played in the Premier League and played with Grant Holt at Rochdale.

'I moved here for a number of reasons, but the main one was the last two years of not playing much football and a chance not to sit on the bench every week. It's been a frustrating time and I've been desperate to play and give to a football club like I've given all my career.

'I could have sat on the bench for a third year but I moved to West Brom from Liverpool to play. I love Liverpool and I've played a lot of games in my career so if I wanted to have a comfy life, I could have stayed at Liverpool.

'I could have stayed at West Brom but I want to be constantly involved, I want to be relied upon like I have been all my career. It's been horrible not to feel that.'

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The centre-forward is expected to be thrown straight in against the Canaries today and is relishing a new lease of life.

'I'm desperate to enjoy my football again and play until I retire,' Lambert said, speaking to Wales Online. 'Obviously I'm 34 so I don't want to be sitting on the bench, I don't want to be remembering my last few years of my career like that.

'I wanted to be relied upon again because wherever I've been people have looked at me to score goals and relied on me to push the team forward.'