Lambert plans hard pre-season
New Villa boss wants to focus on fitness before the season starts
Last Updated: July 10, 2012 3:55pm
Paul Lambert: The new Aston Villa boss plans to put his players through their paces in a tough pre-season
Paul Lambert plans to make his Aston Villa players sweat over their pre-season in a bid to knock them into shape for the start of the Premier League campaign.
Villa finished a disappointing five places off the bottom last season, just two points clear of relegated Bolton, costing boss Alex McLeish his job.
Lambert was brought to the club with great fanfare and promises of bringing flowing football back to Villa Park following a remarkable spell at Norwich in which he guided the club to mid-table safety on a tight budget.
But the former Celtic midfielder says he be going back-to-basics over the next few weeks, focusing on conditioning ahead of their first match against West Ham on 18th August.
"I never read too much into pre-season games to be honest," said Lambert. "It's nice to win. But I have been involved where we have won every pre-season game and then you get turned over in two or three games with the season just started.
"I have had it the other way too where we haven't won a pre-season game and then we have started the season flying.
"The main thing for me is to get the team fit and get them into a way of playing and get their confidence going and not be frightened by making mistakes.
"But it's new. There's freshness about it for them. They can go and express themselves. Once it starts for real that's when it really matters."