Lambert confident of survival

Paul Lambert is adamant he can keep Aston Villa in the Premier

League despite watching his players squander a 1-0 lead against

Liverpool on Easter Sunday.

The Villans were on course for a third successive win when

Christian Benteke’s crisp finish put them ahead, only for Liverpool

to strike twice in the second half.

Jordan Henderson levelled just two minutes into the second half

after a sharp counter-attack and Steven Gerrard scored what turned

out to be the match-winner from the penalty spot after a reckless

foul from Nathan Baker on Luis Suarez.

Villa remain in the relegation places on goal-difference with

seven games remaining, however Lambert did not think there was much

between the teams.

He told Sky Sports: “I thought first half we were excellent – I

really did. There was Gabby’s chance which if he miskicks it

probably goes in but the keeper (Pepe Reina) did well and stood up

to it. There wasn’t much in it in the second half but we never had

the fluency which we did have in the first half, but you can’t give

away goals like we did. It was a definite penalty, I’ve just seen

it.”

Asked how disappointed he was to concede so soon after

half-time, Lambert added: “It was a poor goal two minutes in, when

we were attacking, but Liverpool can do that with the players that

they’ve got. You’ve always got to be switched on against them but

from our point of view it’s a poor goal.”

Next up for Villa is an away trip to Stoke City and Lambert

insists confidence remains high going into the business end of the

season.

He said: “It’s a collective thing. Everyone is in it together

and we move along to the next game. We are certainly playing well

enough to win games.

“We’re certainly playing well enough and we don’t look like a

team who are down the bottom at the minute. If we keep going we’ll

win more games than not.

“Confidence is a big part of the game. We are not lacking in

that. We are making errors because we’re young but the confidence

is there.”