Norwich City boss Lambert happy to bide his time in Bennett race

Norwich City boss Paul Lambert confirmed the Canaries have made an enquiry to sign Brighton’s highly-rated 22-year-old front player Elliott Bennett.

He said: “We made an enquiry and that’s where it is at the minute. I have spoken to (Brighton manager) Gus (Poyet) so we just have to wait and see. I can’t comment on somebody else’s player at the minute.”

Both Poyet and Seagulls chairman this week pledged to keep hold of Bennett who is on a three-and-a-half year deal with the south coast club.

Bennett has been credited with 20 assists in Brighton’s march to the top of League One this season.

The former Wolves youngster would add another creative dimension to City’s attacking play spearheaded by West Hoolahan who Lambert yesterday labelled a ‘free spirit’.

He said: “Wes is a free spirit the way he plays the game but when he is on his game, especially like last week, you have one hell of a player on your hands.

“We don’t really keep the reins on him - it is always difficult to be creative rather than destructive, that is always the case.”

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The Scot also revealed yesterday he is in no rush to let Stephen Hughes out on loan.

Lambert is prepared to allow Hughes to leave Carrow Road on a temporary basis in a bid for regular first team football after an injury-hit campaign.

The 28-year-old made his competitive return in the midweek Norfolk Senior Cup quarter-final win over neighbours Norwich United following his recovery from ankle surgery.

But after Owain Tudur Jones, Matt Gill and Luke Daley all exited on short term loan deals yesterday, Lambert is prepared to bide his time with compatriot Hughes.

He said: “I’m not in a great rush to let him out. I know he needs games but nothing has happened on that.”

Hughes has been targeted SPL trio Aberdeen, St Johnstone and Hibs with Hibernians’ under-fire boss Colin Calderwoord admitting he is a confirmed admirer of the Scotland international.

He said: “I’ll buy and I’ll bring in the right player at the right price.

“Stephen’s got a good record playing up here and it’s easy for someone like him to settle in, but he’s contracted to another club.”

Lambert has successfully agreed a season long loan return for Arsenal’s talented midfielder Henri Lansbury which is expected to be completed after this weekend.