Lambert a party pooper for now

The Canaries are currently perched comfortably in mid-table ahead

of Saturday’s visit to Everton. However, with another tough away

fixture at Wolves next week before the visit of Tottenham on

December 27, Fulham on New Year’s Eve then a trip to Queens Park

Rangers on January 2, Lambert expects every man to be fully focused

on the job in hand. Asked whether his players had held a Christmas

party, the Norwich manager said: “The lads know my feelings on it

at the minute. It is more important to get a foothold in the league

before anything can happen at the minute. “We will see – it might

come in May. I will wait and see.” Lambert added in a news

conference: “We are playing well that we can compete and give teams

a game, which people never thought we could do, so the lads deserve

credit because they are carrying this club forwards. “You can look

at every game in the Premier League, and you just don’t know where

they are coming from – but that is the magnitude of how hard it is

“We have done really fine to put ourselves in a decent position at

the minute.” Norwich have competed well on a first return to the

top flight for the Norfolk club in six seasons, only really being

outplayed in a 5-1 defeat at Premier League leaders Manchester

City. The Canaries produced the required response with a 4-2 home

win over Newcastle last week. Lambert, though, was left less than

impressed by comments from Magpies striker Demba Ba – who advised

teams coming to Carrow Road should “put their bigger lads on the

pitch and they’ll be fine” to combat the threat of frontmen Grant

Holt and Steve Morison, who were both on the scoresheet. “I think

there was a lot made about the Newcastle centre-back area, which I

can understand because I have had the same problem myself,” said

the Norwich manager. “But when Demba Ba came out and said teams

coming to Norwich better play big players, if that is the case,

then Wes Hoolahan must have grown overnight, David Fox must have

grown overnight, Andrew Crofts too – they must be about nine foot

three. “If somebody thinks we are a big side with the footballers

we have got, then maybe they should look a little bit closer. “I

thought it was a little bit detrimental to us. [Newcastle manager]

Alan Pardew was great afterwards, but I just didn’t think that

comment [from Ba] was right saying we are a big side. That is one

thing we are not.” Everton are a couple of places below Norwich in

the table, but Lambert is expecting nothing other than a testing

encounter. “Everton have a great manager and the atmosphere will be

fantastic, so I am looking forward to going because I have never

been to Goodison Park,” the former Celtic midfielder said. “David

Moyes has been exceptional for what he has done up there. From the

outside looking in, they are a terrific side. “Everton have been

established in the Premier League for a long time, so it will be a

really tough game for us – as hard as they come. “Some results may

not have gone their way, but they are still a dangerous side.”