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Lambert: I can handle flak

Aston Villa manager Paul Lambert insists he is unfazed by the criticism aimed his way during the club's recent poor run of form.

Last Updated: 18/01/14 at 16:41 Post Comment

Paul Lambert: Aston Villa boss knows critcism is part of the game

Paul Lambert: Aston Villa boss knows critcism is part of the game

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Villa have won only one of their last eight games in all competitons, and are winless in their last six home fixtures.

Lambert was targeted by sections of the Villa Park crowd during the humiliating 2-1 defeat to Sheffield United in the FA Cup third round.

But the Scot believes he has endured far worse in his career, most notably from Rangers fans in Glasgow while he was playing for Celtic.

"I used to walk the streets of Glasgow at times and... well, if you can handle Glasgow then you can handle a lot of places.

"Criticism is part of the game. You take it on the chin and you try and move on and learn from it. You stay level, which is important."

Lambert received a resounding vote of confidence from chief executive Paul Faulkner this week, and owner Randy Lerner is also believed to be right behind his manager.

"It's always good to get support from people," Lambert added. "But I've never lost my focus. Everybody knows football - one minute you are up, the next you are down.

"Very rarely do you get an even keel. It's just learning to live with that kind of situation. The more experience you get and the older you get, you live with the situation."

Lambert takes his team to high-flying Liverpool for Saturday Night Football, live on Sky Sports 1HD, and he believes his good friend Brendan Rodgers could guide the Reds to the Premier League title this season.

"They've a chance, no two ways about it," said Lambert. "Brendan's a really good guy who did well at Swansea and has enhanced Liverpool.

"In my era, Liverpool dominated everything with Kenny (Dalglish) and those guys. Now whether they can win it this year, I don't know, but they are certainly in with a shout.

"With Luis Suarez, he is probably one of the top players in Europe right now, with the way he has been performing, the way he is playing, the confidence.

"Everything he does comes off. He was a top player last year, but he seems to have gone up to another level this season."

Lambert will have two new faces to bolster his squad in striker Grant Holt and defender Ryan Bertrand, signed this week on loan until the end of the season from Wigan and Chelsea, respectively.

"Holt was a no-brainer for me," said Lambert. "For the three years he was with me at Norwich he was fantastic. He was a big character. I know what I'm going to get, I know what he can give to the club, and I think he'll surprise a few people.

"As for Ryan, he brings a lot of big-game experience, not only in the league but even a Champions League final which Chelsea won, so he'll be really good for us.

"The way he plays the game, and as a person too, he'll fit in here great."

Watch Liverpool v Villa LIVE on Ford Saturday Night Football, coverage starts at 5.00pm on Sky Sports 1

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