Lambert - Let's get the job done
David Cuffley Manager Paul Lambert insists Norwich City have unfinished business in League One before they can think about any end-of-season celebrations. The promoted Canaries go into their penultimate home match of the season against Gillingham tomorrow needing one point to be certain of becoming champions.
Manager Paul Lambert insists Norwich City have unfinished business in League One before they can think about any end-of-season celebrations.
The promoted Canaries go into their penultimate home match of the season against Gillingham tomorrow needing one point to be certain of becoming champions.
And he is determined they will clinch top spot in front of their home crowd in the sell-out fixture at Carrow Road (3pm).
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Lambert describes promotion as a “colossal achievement” but with his side nine points clear of Leeds with three games to play they are also on the brink of the title.
In his Evening News column tonight, he warns: “The job is not finished, however. There may be a debate going on over celebrations at the end of the season, but I'm not thinking about that because we are not done yet. We still have to win the championship and I want to concentrate on that.”
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Gillingham beat Leeds 3-2 last week but are still not certain of League One survival and will be looking for their first league away win of the season.
Said Lambert: “They are still looking for points to secure their own position and we know from two previous meetings with them this season that there is another tough game in prospect - like everyone else who comes to Carrow Road.”
Not that the City boss will have his normal touchline view of events tom-orrow. Lambert and head of football operations Gary Karsa have been handed touchline bans after an FA regulatory commission hearing yesterday heard charges issued against the pair.
Lambert was given a one-match ban and fined �1,000 for improper conduct and use of abusive and/or insulting words during the Canaries' match at Tranmere Rovers on April 2, when he ran on the pitch to kick the ball back and was sent to the stand by referee Eddie Ilderton.
Karsa was also given a one-match touchline ban and fined �500 for improper conduct during the same match. He was also sent to the stand by the official.
It is the second time this season Lambert has been in trouble with the FA this season after he was fined �750 and warned as to his future conduct in September after an incident during his time as Colchester boss.
The touchline bans take immediate effect so both Lambert and Karsa will be sitting in the stand tomorrow.
Skipper Grant Holt is available again after serving a two-match ban for his 10th yellow card of the season, but Lambert was waiting until today for an update on forward Wes Hoolahan and midfielder Korey Smith, both of whom missed the 1-0 win at Charlton that clinched City's return to the Championship.
Hoolahan has missed four matches with a thigh strain and has yet to resume full training, while Smith was absent at Charlton with an ankle injury.
An extra 250 tickets for tomorrow's game went on sale at 9am today and limited numbers will be available tomorrow from 1pm from the buy-back windows in the Jarrold Stand.
If City win the title tomorrow, there will be no formal presentations but the players and management team will come back on to the pitch after the game to salute the crowd. Fans have been warned, however, they must not come on to the pitch or perimeter track.
“The squad and the management team will not come out again after the game if any unauthorised people are on the pitch or the perimeter track,” said a club statement.