City boss Paul Lambert has again played down speculation linking him with the vacant hot seat at Celtic Park.
The former Bhoys hero has been amongst the favourites ever since Tony Mowbray was shown the door almost a month ago. But Lambert continues to insist that he’s more than happy in Norfolk, especially after steering the club back into the Championship with that 1-0 win at Charlton last weekend.
The summer will, however, be an interesting period if the Glasgow giants decide against appointing interim manager Neil Lennon – who has won every league game in charge – on a permanent basis.
“The only people that talk about it are the ones speculating,” said the Canary chief, speaking in a TalkSport interview on Monday afternoon. “I don’t ever think about it.
“I had a terrific time up there for eight years and worked under probably the best Celtic manager since Jock Stein in Martin O’Neill.
“It’s a marvellous football club but my time is here and I absolutely love it at Norwich. I came here when the club was hurting but we’ve taken it up and I’ll continue to do my best for this football club.”
With ‘previous’ for leaving when a better offer comes along, City fans will be rightfully nervous. But Lambert admitted that the top job at Carrow Road was just too good to turn down when the then-Colchester boss was approached in August.
Hopefully the Scot now knows he’s onto a good thing and Lambert revealed that he had no hesitation in taking up the role, despite witnessing that opening day farce with his very own eyes.
“I didn’t really, to be honest. I just felt that the fan base was going to be a big factor for this football club.
“Whether the players could handle the expectancy levels was another matter but I couldn’t turn it down – it was a terrific opportunity. Thankfully it has worked.”
One of the major reasons why it has worked is down to Lambert’s managerial prowess and the way in which he steadied the good ship Canary was very impressive. Concentrating on making City more solid, the results were immediate, with a big emphasis on the word ‘team’.
“To have any sort of success in football you’ve got to play as a team and you’re only as good as the person next to you. They were playing their own individual game at times.
“But we got that right and got the spirit right. They’ve been absolutely brilliant for me and some of the performances have been terrific.
“We’ve had to fight in some games but we’ve also played some terrific stuff at times. We’ve earned the right to get out of the league.”
And despite the first round of promotion parties only now dying down, the City manager is already planning for life in the second tier.
“I think you have to. First and foremost we had to get promotion and the next step is to win the league.
“But we know we need a bit of help for next season with new players coming into the football club.”