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Poch: Lambert must become more mobile
The Saints talisman has risen to national prominence thanks to his two England goals this season, but has netted just once for his club side, that a penalty on the opening day of the campaign.
Pochettino revealed the Saints coaching staff are trying to adapt Lambert’s game to make him more mobile but believes the big change has to come as the striker adapts to life in the football spotlight for the first time in his 30s.
“I think he needs time to adapt to his new situation, especially being 31-years-old,” said Pochettino. “I think it places a lot of physical and mental stress on him to be all of a sudden this big star or big name in the international side.
“He needs to be able to withstand and adapt to that mental pressure and that physical pressure that he is facing at the moment. And also considering the fact he is a new dad and moved house as well – many things.”
Pochettino also defended Lambert against any criticism coming his way for his lack of goals.
“We are very happy and pleased with how he’s playing, very happy with his contributions to the team and I have no doubts the goals will start coming from him as well,” he insisted.
"In addition to that there is a new situation Rickie Lambert is going through – he’s 31-years-old and only now in the international side and there is a lot of expectation placed on him.
“It’s something he has to adapt to that new situation he is going through but we are very relaxed about his contribution and performances.”
Despite that Pochettino is trying to work on adapting Lambert’s game and explained: “He’s a player that has really surprised because everyone puts him in the category of the typical big English centre forward.
“But he’s technically very good at receiving the ball, passing it off, playing the short pass on the ground and not the long ball – he doesn’t fit into the mould of the typical big and clumsy English centre forward who only knows how to pass with his head.
“He can assist the ball quite well, he can cross the ball, so I am pleased with the mixture he brings to the team.
“I guess the only thing that we are trying to make him see is that he needs to be more mobile, he can move a lot more around the pitch and he doesn’t have to be static in one place.
“We are trying to make him understand how to interpret the open spaces where he can roam.
“He is already a dynamic player but we want him to increase that even more.”
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