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City not underdogs - Lambert

PUBLISHED: 17:07 19 October 2009 | UPDATED: 15:21 03 July 2010

NORWICH City boss Paul Lambert rates this evening's televised clash with Leeds United as one of the biggest games of the whole League One season - and insists his side need not feel like the underdogs.

NORWICH City boss Paul Lambert rates this evening's televised clash with Leeds United as one of the biggest games of the whole League One season - and insists his side need not feel like the underdogs.

Lambert guided Colchester to a 2-1 league victory at Elland Road last season and will be hoping to repeat the feat with his in-form Canaries tonight (7.45pm).

And though Leeds have not lost at home in the league since January, he believes his own team's unbeaten six-match run means they need not fear Simon Grayson's men.

“I wouldn't say we were underdogs - not the way we're playing. Simon's done great up there so it's a really, really tough game but it's a game where we will do our best to go and win.

“We don't have any fear going up there, that's for sure. It's a great game, a great crowd to play in front of and we will have a terrific following ourselves going up there, so it's probably one of the best games throughout the league.

“Yes, it's a massive game and a massive club that we're going to go and play against.

“If we can win and it keeps the run going it will be great, but we won't say it's any harder than Wycombe was. Every game in the league is really, really tough.”

Lambert would not single out any Leeds player as a special threat despite the presence of feared striker Jermaine Beckford.

He said: “I rate Leeds as a team, not just an individual. It's a whole team that is really strong. We know the front two lads can score goals so this is a tough game but I'm pretty sure if you ask them they'll feel the same about us at the minute.”

Grayson's team have not played since their Johnstone's Paint Trophy home win over Darlington on October 6 because of international call-ups last weekend, so have had four days longer out of action that City.

“They've had a fortnight off. Sometimes if you don't play, in the first game you come back you think 'My legs aren't there' because you've missed a game the previous week, so I think it can work for you or against you - hopefully it will go against them.”

Jon Otsemobor may be fit to return at right-back after missing four matches, all victories, with a hamstring problem, but other injuries apart, Lambert is not expected to make many changes to the team that won 1-0 at Carlisle. He could opt for an extra midfielder with Stephen Hughes back from international duty with Scotland, but may not wish to change a winning formation.

Grayson has a string of injury problems and was trying to sign Wolves striker Sam Vokes on loan by noon today in time for the game.

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