Newcastle 1-1 Villa blog: Lambert philosophies shining through
Paul Brown on Villa improvement.
3rd Sep 2012
Newcastle 1-1 Villa blog: Lambert philosophies shining through


It takes a lot for a home manager, despairing of his own side's lack of pizzazz and penetration, to come out and openly praise the opposition.

That's exactly what Alan Pardew did in the aftermath of the 1-1 draw between Newcastle and Villa.

And not just once, but in two separate video interviews - with BBC Sport and Sky Sports.

"Villa worked their socks off for Paul Lambert," said Pardew.

"He should be very proud of their performance.

"Fair play to Villa. I take my hat off to them. They worked so hard. I genuinely don't think we will come across many teams who worked as hard as Villa in that game."

I think those comments were very apt because it was obvious for all to see that Villa's desire and determination were there in abundance.

They scurried across the park, they hunted the ball in packs, they never gave up on anything and, also on the offensive side, they had tremendous cutting-edge in attack.

Lambert was certainly impressed, telling AVTV: "I was most pleased with the effort and desire on show. If they keep that spirit and collectiveness they will be fine."

No wonder Lambert was so thrilled with that element of his side's game because it was one of the things he picked up as being in need of improvement when he arrived at the football club.

He saw players hurt from previous tough campaigns.

"I think the big thing that's been missing here is the collective as a group," he told the fans forum.

"The group togetherness has not been there. Individually there are some really talented players but being an individual won't win you anything.

"It might make you look good when you go home to your wife or mum and dad and they tell you you've been brilliant but you've lost about 4-0.

"So the thing that surprised me was there wasn't togetherness. That's what we have to get. If we can get that, there are some really good players here."

His attitude of the collective being the No.1 element was further enhanced when asked on AVTV about Ciaran Clark's performance. He replied: "As a team we were very good."

So, one month on from his address to supporters in the Holte Suite, and judging by the performance against Newcastle - coupled by the buoyant and jaunty mood at the training ground - it's plain to see that Lambert has already got things going his way.

And the only way we're going now is up!

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