Southampton striker Rickie Lambert is set to win his first cap for England in the friendly against Scotland tonight and the big target man credits Newcastle United manager Alan Pardew for giving him the kick up the backside that he needed.
Success has come later in life for 31-year-old Rickie Lambert. After having played in the lower leagues for a number of clubs, Lambert finally made it to the top flight when Southampton got promoted in 2012, so you could definitely say that he earned it.
Lambert had an incredibly successful first season in the Premier League, playing in all 38 games and scoring 15 goals to help Southampton comfortably avoid relegation, and his reward is to be called up by Roy Hodgson to the England squad.
Standing at 6ft 2in, Lambert is your old school target man, a classic British forward, a throwback to the old days if you liked, not too dissimilar to a certain Newcastle legend who goes by the name of Alan Shearer.
It is all going well for Lambert now, but he has admitted that his professionalism wasn’t always what it should have been in the past and that it took former Southampton manager Alan Pardew to point that out to him.
Pardew basically gave him a kick up the backside and Lambert commented “That really stuck. I was overweight, basically. I wasn’t looking after my body the way I should have.”
Fast forward a few years and Lambert is at the top of his game, which shows that Pardew’s man management skills are pretty good!
Given the picture that I posted earlier in the week, Pardew might just have to have a word with Hatem Ben Arfa about his weight…