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Kings of Anglia Issue 10 Magazine Offer

‘I’m just going to go for it’ – Lambert’s game plan for the East Anglian derby

PUBLISHED: 06:00 10 February 2019

Ipswich Town skipper Luke Chambers celebrates his late goal at Norwich City last season. Photo: Pagepix

Ipswich Town skipper Luke Chambers celebrates his late goal at Norwich City last season. Photo: Pagepix

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Ipswich Town take on Norwich City, at Carrow Road, in the second East Anglian derby of the season this afternoon (12pm ko). STUART WATSON previews the action.

Dean Gerken is beaten by Moritz Leitner's equaliser in the 1-1 draw at Portman Road last September. Photo: Steve WallerDean Gerken is beaten by Moritz Leitner's equaliser in the 1-1 draw at Portman Road last September. Photo: Steve Waller

Ipswich Town manager Paul Lambert wants his team to play with ‘controlled aggression’ in tomorrow lunchtime’s East Anglian derby.

The Blues boss says he is relishing the prospect of a hostile reception on his return to the club he led from League One to a mid-table Premier League finish.

That is just one major sub-plot for what, going into the weekend, was a top-versus-bottom Championship clash.

There may be a 39-point chasm between the sides, but Lambert – whose team have lost 11 of their last 14 – scoffs at the thought he would be content with a draw or abandon his possession principles.

MORE: ‘I know what’s coming... it doesn’t faze me’ – Ipswich Town manager Paul Lambert anticipates hostile reception on return to Norwich City

Asked if he and his players need to rise above the emotion of the occasion, Lambert said: “I don’t want us to be a soft touch. I don’t want us to sit back, let them have the ball and let things happen. No, we go there and we have to have aggression, controlled aggression, enthusiasm, tempo – everything you associate with football.

“If we don’t have that we’ll have a hard time. If we have that then we’ll be in the game. I won’t curtail anybody. To be a top, top player you have to have that devilment in you.”

MORE: ‘Do we start him or bring him on to make an impact?’ - Lambert on using creative spark Bishop

Paul Lambert says he expects a hostile reception at former club Norwich City on his return as Ipswich Town boss. Photo: Ross HallPaul Lambert says he expects a hostile reception at former club Norwich City on his return as Ipswich Town boss. Photo: Ross Hall

Norwich leapfrogged Leeds at the top with a 3-1 victory at Elland Road last weekend, while Town conceded a last-minute goal to lose 1-0 at home to Sheffield Wednesday.

Asked if he was surprised to see his former employers at the top, Lambert said: “I don’t know because I’ve not really followed them. I don’t know major, major things about them. I know they are where they are and they are playing well... but let’s see what happens.

“I respect Norwich as a team, I’ve got to trust in my own players. Let them worry about us. We will play the way we play.

“I don’t have a balancing act. I just go for it. That’s what I’m going to do. I’m just going to go for it. That’s my balancing act.

MORE: Everything you need to know: Norwich City v Ipswich Town - how to watch, travel information and more

“It’s going to be difficult. I know that. But I’d rather go and give it a go than not.

“Play my way, play the club’s way – my message to the players has been what it’s always been.”

He added: “We’ll go there with so much heart and so much enthusiasm. It’s a difficult game, but on any given day you can win.

James Collins faces a late fitness test on a troublesome hamstring. Photo: Steve WallerJames Collins faces a late fitness test on a troublesome hamstring. Photo: Steve Waller

“We’ll need a bit of luck, some good play and some fight. Nobody knows if it’s going to be good enough, but we’ll be ready for it.”

Opposition lowdown

Manager: Daniel Farke (May 2017): P87 W37 D26 L24

Last five finishes: 14th, 8th (both Champ’), 19th (Prem Lg), 3rd (Champ’), 18th (Prem Lg)

Home form: W9 D2 L4 F31 A25

Last game: W 3-1 Leeds (a)

Last home game: D 2-2 Sheff Utd

Alan Judge and James Bree pictured following last weekend's 1-0 home defeat to Sheffield Wednesday. Picture: Steve WallerAlan Judge and James Bree pictured following last weekend's 1-0 home defeat to Sheffield Wednesday. Picture: Steve Waller

Margins of victory: 1 (x11), 2 (x6), 3+ (x2)

Margins of defeat: 1 (x6), 3 (x1)

Most league starts: 30: Krul; 27: Pukki; 26: Lewis; 25: Aarons, Tettey

Top-scorers: Pukki (19), Rhodes (9), Vrancic (7), Hernandez (6)

Stat attack

2009 – Town’s last win against Norwich (D5 L6 F8 A11)

39 – Points between the sides

Gwion Edwards celebrates his opener in Ipswich Town's 1-1 home draw with Norwich City earlier this seaosn. Photo: Steve WallerGwion Edwards celebrates his opener in Ipswich Town's 1-1 home draw with Norwich City earlier this seaosn. Photo: Steve Waller

Town XI v Norwich last Sept: Gerken; Spence, Pennington, Chambers, Knudsen; Edwards, Skuse, Nolan, Graham; Walters, Jackson.

Last meeting

Ipswich Town 1 Norwich City 1

Date: Sunday, September 2, 2018

Town’s wait for an East Anglian derby win went on as Gwion Edwards’ deflected strike (57) was cancelled out as Moritz Leitner picked his spot (71).

Paul Hurst’s side were left to rue not scoring a killer second when on top, Edwards dragging a big chance wide.

Ipswich Town team news

• Paul Lambert will hand late fitness tests to experienced centre-back duo Luke Chambers (foot) and James Collins (hamstring). Both have barely trained for the last fortnight.

• Trevoh Chalobah and Will Keane are pushing for a start after impacts off the bench in last weekend’s 1-0 home loss to Sheffield Wednesday.

• Lambert says he has a decision to make regarding whether midfielder Teddy Bishop should start or ‘make an impact’.

• Emyr Huws, Grant Ward and Tom Adeyemi remain long-term absentees.

• Ben Morris has joined fellow youth team striker Ben Folami in suffering a cruciate knee ligament injury.

Norwich City team news

• Defender Timm Klose (knee) and midfielder Moritz Leitner (ankle) – who scored the equalisers in the last two meetings between the sides – remain sidelined.

• Experienced midfielder Alex Tettey is available again after a groin problem. He returned to action as a late sub last weekend.

• Deadline day signing Philip Heise, a German left-back recruited from Dynamo Dresden, could be involved for the first time.

• Louis Thompson (knee) and Carlton Morris (ankle) remain long-term absentees.

Opposition key man

Teemu Pukki

Finnish forward has scored 18 goals in 27 Championship starts. That’s just five fewer than the entire Town squad. What a free transfer the 28-year-old has been from Danish side Brondby.

Odds

Norwich City 2/5

Draw 4/1

Ipswich Town 9/1

Referee

Peter Bankes

Games: 19, Yellows: 96, Reds: 2

Stu’s prediction

Norwich City 2 Ipswich Town 1

Blues to give it their all, but worry it will ultimately be comfortable for the Canaries.

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