Is it time for the Lambert Walk?
Middlesbrough and Brighton both won on Tuesday to close the gap at the top of the league. We are now just a point ahead of Middlesbrough, who have a game in hand, and two points in front of Brighton, but the big news in the Championship seems set to focus on Blackburn Rovers and the future of their manager Paul Lambert.
Firstly, can I say that I make no apology for nicking the headline from the message board, as the news coming out of Ewood seems to be one of chaos again.
When Agent Keane was in charge I think he had a block booking on flights to Pune, India to meet with the Rao family who own the club through Venky’s, but it is not the case for Lambert who has been knocking less and less patiently on the door which still, as far as he is concerned, hasn’t been answered.
Lambert said today: “I’ve not had talks with the owners. I’ve had talks with their advisor.” Now that gave me a lift. Can we expect the return of global advisor Shebby Singh? He was one of the best things to come out of Ewood in years but alas not, the latest is Suhail Pasha but there is no ‘global’ in his title. He’s just a bog standard advisor apparently.
But he’s the man with the power by the looks of thing and he’s not letting Lambert anywhere near Mrs Dessai and her people.
Lambert is not happy, of that there is no doubt. “I’ve always said it needs everybody to swing in the same direction,” he added. Swingers now – maybe one of them can audition to replace Donald on the next series of Benidorm.
We can’t know what’s going to happen, only Lambert does, but it wouldn’t come as too much of a surprise to hear that they are searching for a new manager sometime soon, and certainly before the start of next season. Lambert wants money to spend to build a squad for promotion. That’s going to cost, but they’ve got it, the debts are nowhere near Bolton’s yet.
Of course, they’ve nothing to play for now. Neither have Bolton, I don’t think. They can’t go down this weekend but I don’t think it will be too long before it is confirmed. Phil Brown is apparently still favourite to be their next manager. They do like their legends in charge in Horwich. Surely the sun tanned one didn’t score twelve goals for them.
Charlton, incredibly, after a good month are only one point behind the franchise in MK. Jose Riga’s side are still seven points from the safe position currently held by Rotherham. It’s going to be extremely difficult for Charlton and MK to avoid the drop now with Rotherham, Fulham and Bristol City all picking up points too regularly. Rotherham’s visit to MK could be a crucial game this weekend.
Up at the top, surely four became three on Tuesday night when Derby broke all their rules and beat Hull 4-0. Hull went into the game with the best defensive record in the division with only 23 conceded in 38 games, but they never recovered from two first half goals scored by Bradley Johnson and conceded again six minutes from time with the fourth going in four minutes into stoppage time.
To make things worse, Hull had Moses Odubajo sent off for bringing down their former player Tom Ince. Steve Bruce admitted: “On a big stage tonight, we haven’t performed at all to the level I’m used to seeing. In a big top of the table clash to make the mistakes and errors we made was just bordering on the ridiculous.”
Like Middlesbrough, they have a game in hand, but they are now eight points behind us and that would take some serious catching. They now have just one point more than Sheffield Wednesday and two points more than Derby who occupy the remaining play-off places and those places were secured just that bit more with Cardiff only drawing at Burnley.
Could there be some big news to come out of Nottingham Forest soon? When Fawaz Al Hasawi took over in July 2012 he made his first big decision within 48 hours and sacked manager Steve Cotterill. Currently without a manager the pair were seen in conversation at Reading on Tuesday. Former Forest player and now ambassador John McGovern says there is nothing in it, it was nothing more than a chance meeting, but it has been enough to shorten his odds to 8/1 for the job although Nigel Clough, currently at Burton, remains favourite.
All but one of this weekend’s fixtures will be played on Saturday with Brighton’s trip to Forest to be played in front of the Sky cameras on Monday night.
href=”http://www.uptheclarets.com/goalscores-discipline-attendances”>Goalscorers – Discipline – Attendances which is within the 2015/16 Stats on the top menu.
THIS WEEK’S FIXTURES
Saturday 9th April
Bristol City v Sheffield Wednesday
Burnley v Leeds (12:30 p.m. kick off)
Derby v Bolton
Fulham v Cardiff
Huddersfield v Hull
Ipswich v Brentford
Middlesbrough v Preston
MK v Rotherham
QPR v Charlton
Reading v Birmingham
Wolves v Blackburn
Monday 11th April
Nottingham Forest v Brighton