At this stage in the season, every team has something to fight for: Premier League survival, European qualification or winning the title.
Thanks to some great displays under Lambert this year, many would say that Norwich are all but assured a second season in England’s top flight.
Though the man himself would never take that for granted.
Here’s a preview of Norwich City’s next five games, to see where they can pick up more points on the road to Premier League safety.
I was one of many who had written off Newcastle United at the start of the season, but they made an excellent start with Demba Ba contributing 16 goals so far this season and the whole squad pulling together with some great team performances.
Norwich hosted the injury—hit Toon Army at Carrow Road in December and ran out 4-2 winners in a thrilling game.
City travel to whatever Newcastle’s home ground is called this week on Sunday, expecting a tough test from a Newcastle side currently in sixth place.
Despite not having won in their last four games, the Magpies will be looking for revenge. They have enough quality in their team to edge Norwich at home.
Predicted Score: Newcastle 2—Norwich 1.
To put it mildly, Wolves have not enjoyed a successful season in the Premiership this year.
Many Norwich fans will not be too upset by this, still harbouring a resentment towards a club that paid Kevin Muscat’s wages.
After sacking Mick McCarthy in January, the board struggled to find a willing replacement for the man that got them to the Premier League in 2009.
Assistant Manager Terry Connor accepted the job until the end of the season, but results have not picked up during his short tenure, with Wolves failing to win even one game under his charge.
Norwich drew 2-2 at Molineux earlier in the season, but have an opportunity to pick up three valuable home points against the current second-bottom club in the Premiership.
Predicted Score: Norwich 3—Wolves 1.
Craven Cottage has been a tough place to go, with Fulham having lost only three games there this campaign.
They have also handed out some heavy beatings, including putting five goals past both Wolves and Newcastle and thumping Queens Park Rangers 6-0 back in October.
Their main attacking threat is Clint Dempsey, who has scored 18 goals in all competitions this season, form that has ensured that he is offered a new contract by Fulham with his current deal set to expire next summer.
Norwich drew 1-1 with Fulham at Carrow Road on New Year’s Eve, with City scoring, as they are wont to do, in injury time to deny Fulham all three points.
The Cottagers are currently in 10th place, on equal points with Norwich. Despite this current equality, Fulham are a good side who will provide a stern test for Norwich on March 31.
Predicted Score: Fulham 2—Norwich 1.
Everton are currently one place above Fulham, and have just one more point than Norwich.
While none of Everton’s current squad has scored many goals, Leighton Baines has made a good contribution from left back with four. His defensive prowess will also pose a challenge for City’s attacking players.
The Toffees hosted Norwich back in December in a 1-1 draw where Norwich played well, with Everton managing to break down some stout defending by the Canaries to rescue a point.
Everton are a good side but at home, Norwich are also good enough not to lose this one.
Predicted Score: Norwich 1—Everton 1.
When Spurs came to Carrow Road in December they gave us a footballing master class.
There have not been many times this season where Norwich have looked out of their depth but this was one such occasion.
Gareth Bale provided both goals for the visitors as Spurs easily won 2-0.
While he is currently out injured, he is expected to be fit again by the time Norwich travel to White Hart Lane. Expect him to continue where he left off and to be a major thorn in City’s side.
Spurs have had a remarkable season and currently sit in 3rd place. Harry Redknapp has had them playing out of their skins and it is no wonder that the club do not want to lose him to the England manager’s job.
However, it could be that the continued speculation about Redknapp’s future is having an effect on the team, as Tottenham have lost their last three Premier League games, including a 5-2 schooling at the hands of their most bitter rival, Arsenal.
Even with this current slump, Spurs will still be expected to return to their winning ways.
Norwich can expect things to be no easier than last time around when they play Spurs at the start of April.
Unfortunately it looks like it will be more of the same from Bale and company.
Predicted Score: Tottenham 3—Norwich 0.
I have predicted that Norwich will come away with four points in the next five games.
I hope the final total will be higher, but as we have already established, every game in the Premier League is as hard as the rest.
Like most City fans, I said at the start of the season that I would be happy with Norwich finishing in 17th place.
Norwich have already surpassed even my most optimistic expectations for the season.
It continues to be a joy to support the club under Davis McNally and Paul Lambert, two men who have done the most to bring success to Norfolk over the past two-and-a-half years.
Four points from the next five games; It doesn’t sound a lot, but it will get us to that magical 40-point mark—the number of points generally thought to equal Premiership survival.
Then we can start to look forward to another season of Premier League football in Norfolk.