Gaffer relishing big Molineux crowd
Paul Lambert says the onus is on Wolves to get a big crowd going at Molineux tomorrow as they welcome Sheffield Wednesday for his first home game at the helm (3pm).
A crowd in excess of 27,000 which would be the biggest for almost two years is expected, with fans also set to pay tribute to club legends Steve Bull and Andy Thompson at half time, 30 years on from when they first signed for the club.
And the Head Coach says the players should thrive on that sort of crowd and expectation.
“As a home team the onus is always on you,” he says.
“We are going to have a brilliant crowd tomorrow and that will drive us on.
“We have to be ready for the occasion and handle the occasion.
“It is something players should thrive on and if they do that then we have a chance.
“The benefit of this football club is that it has that fanbase behind it.
“If you are fortunate to play here then you live with that crowd behind you and it is up to us to get them going.
“I have said before if we can get the team and crowd to interact we will have a chance of winning games.
“And when players look at the likes of Steve Bull and Andy Thompson coming back tomorrow, that has to be an inspiration.
“I understand the contributions made by Steve and Andy, and the legacy they have left behind at this football club
“They quite rightly deserve the adulation they get and that is important.
“If you are at a club and follow players of that ilk, you have to look up to it.
“The beauty of being a young player at this club is the stature of those players who have gone before you.
“If you have any aspirations to be a top level footballer, you can look at what those role models have achieved.”
Lambert is expecting a tough test from a Sheffield Wednesday side which were 90 minutes away from the Premier League last season only to be beaten by Hull City in the play-off final at Wembley.
The Owls, who include former Wolves men Dave Jones and Steven Fletcher in their squad, are currently ninth in the Sky Bet Championship table, a couple of points off this year’s race for the play-offs.
“They just lost out in the play offs last year and are a good team,” said Lambert.
“They had a lot of investment last season and Carlos (Carvalhal) has done really well there.
“They are ahead of us at the minute in where they are and longevity - they have some good players and have been together for a few years.
“It is a tough game for us but if we play as we know we can then we can get a result.
“On any given day you can win a game and we have to be on the front foot.”
And concentrating on what Wolves can do remains Lambert’s focus as the players look to maintain the organisation and grit shown at Preston last weekend, and add some forward flair.
“The performance was good last weekend and training-wise they have been upbeat this week and looking forward to the game,” said the Head Coach.
“It was good to get a clean sheet and that aspect was a lot better than what it had been before.
“And then, in the last third of the pitch, it is about playing with freedom and risk,
“In that part of the pitch I don’t mind anyone making mistakes as long as they try to make things happen.
“That has always been my way.
“That is is the bit of the game we have to improve on.
‘Defensively, set plays, organisation – that was terrific last weekend.
“Going forward is where we need to get a little bit more out of them.”
*With a big crowd expected at Molineux tomorrow, fans are encouraged to arrive early to avoid congestion.
We are going to have a brilliant crowd tomorrow and that will drive us on