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Premier League preview: Aston Villa v Norwich

Aston Villa manager Paul Lambert will face his former club Norwich City for the first time on Saturday with both teams desperate for a win.

Lambert lost some patience after Villa’s latest defeat, a 1-0 loss away to Fulham, but said there were still ‘country miles’ to go this season in the English Premier League.

The 43-year-old Scottish manager would undoubtedly love to take three points against his old team to move away from the relegation zone.

Aston Villa are 17th and have just five points from eight games, only one point and one position ahead of Southampton, who occupy one of the relegation spots, but Lambert remains convinced his team wi
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ll turn their results around soon.

“There’s no time to mope,” Lambert told the club’s website.

“If you start feeling sorry for yourself then you get problems.

“Some of the football we are playing at the moment is pleasing, it’s not like we’re struggling all over the park, we’re playing some really decent football.

“There are miles to go, country miles to go but we do need to start turning these performances into wins.”

Norwich head west to Birmingham on the back of a 1-0 home win against Arsenal last week.

Norwich manager Chris Hughton has taken his team to 15th on the table with six points.

Striker Grant Holt scored the winner for Norwich against Arsenal and if his team are to move up the table, the bustling 31-year-old, who scored 15 goals in the Premier League last season, will be central to that.

While Lambert will know all about Holt, any plans he creates to nullify the Norwich forward may come to nothing unless he can fix Villa’s defence.

Lambert’s team have conceded 13 league goals this season but even if Villa’s boss would like to change his back four, the long-term injuries to Richard Dunne, Ciaran Clark and Nathan Baker limit his options.

Norwich’s defence has been no better, conceding 17 goals in eight games and whichever team can click up front at Villa Park will most likely take the points.

Lambert started Darren Bent and Gabriel Agbonlahor up front against Fulham, putting Christian Benteke on the bench, but Villa’s forward line remains a problem area.

Thu 25 October, 2012
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