Revenge Is On The Cards For Stoke Tonight
Stoke City manager Paul Lambert wasn't in the hotseat when Manchester City stuffed the side seven two earlier in the season but he was determined that the players would be out for some revenge and to prove a point tonight as we host the Champions elect at the bet365 Stadium later this evening.
With October's drubbing behind us, City will be no roll overs as they are only four wins away from securing the title early but Lambert told the Official Website that was looking for Stoke to be a party pooper.
'I`ve been on the end of a few hidings myself and you try and make sure it doesn`t happen again. You have to try and put a marker down and try and make it ugly. We`ve got to try and take Manchester City out of their comfort zone in some capacity, in some way. But me, as a player and a person, I wouldn`t have been able to stand for it happening again and that`s the way I hope the players are feeling too. I hope they are still hurting and it`s important that we go on the front foot on Monday.'
With that said, Lambert admitted he was certainly a fan of opposite number Pep Guardiola and the Scotsman has previously studied him at close quarters having been invited to spend a day with him during his time at Bayern Munich.
'People say that he had great players at Barcelona and Bayern but you`ve still got to manage those guys and you`ve got to get them believing in how you want to play. He`s done it at Barcelona and Bayern and he`s done it here with City. It`s not by luck or anything like that.'
Lambert went on to say.
'I had a really good chat with him - it was a really good education just sitting with him and talking about football and then I watched a training session. I thought he was brilliant. He built a Bayern Munich team that was sweeping everything before them. Ok, he never won the Champions League with Bayern but by God, he won everything else! You can`t say that because he didn`t win the Champions League that he was a failure - that`s nonsense. He created a brand of football that was fantastic. He did it at Barcelona and they were the best club team I`ve ever seen in terms of the way they played. They were fabulous and he did it at Bayern as well. I understand why he`s at the top of his profession because I`ve seen how he works.'
Hopefully Lambert learnt a trick or two that he can put into practice, but despite all his kind words he knows anything can happen in the game so Stoke certainly haven't already lost the tie.
'On any given day you can win a game of football. If I go back to my own playing career, did anyone give Borussia Dortmund a chance against the great Juve side in 97? Probably not. Probably everybody and their dog thought Juve would win. In a one-off game you can win, and that is the beauty of football. We'll do everything we can to try to win.'
He ended by saying that bottom line we had to be ready, start brightly and show our own quality and then just see what happens as the minutes tick by.
'I know it will be incredibly tough, but also we have to try to entertain as well and try to make it a game that they don't really want. If we try to play football the same way they do, then we will be beat, that is the reality. We have to have an idea of another way to try to beat them.'