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Sunday 30 September 2012

Matchweek 6: Lambert vows to keep attacking ahead of derby

Preview of Sunday's West Midlands derby that takes place at Villa Park

Steve Clarke has called Ben Foster's mistakes a "one-off"

Aston Villa manager Paul Lambert has vowed to continue his attacking approach ahead of his first West Midlands derby as his team take on West Bromwich Albion at Villa Park.

Villa will head into the Barclays Premier League match with the Baggies on the crest of a wave after their 4-2 win at Manchester City in the Capital One Cup in midweek.

Lambert knows what overcoming Albion will mean to the Villa fans especially after their opponents finished as the top Midlands side during the 2011-2012 campaign.

He is pleased with the progress Villa are making since he took over in the summer and how they bounced back from their 4-1 defeat by Southampton in the Barclays Premier League last weekend by beating City.

"The response at City was brilliant," he said. "That's how you judge a team and the response was outstanding. It is as exciting as hell watching us at the minute. Your heart is pumping like everyone else when you stand and watch it.

"Being attack-minded is the way I've been brought up"
Paul Lambert

"But it's something I'm really enjoying and I'm pretty sure the players are and the fans are. Yes, you are disappointed at losing at certain times, but the excitement is definitely there for everyone to see.

"Being attack-minded is the way I've been brought up. I don't think it's a trait that is ever going to leave me. I don't want it to because, if you are going to get beat, make sure you get beat the right way - but also I want to win 3-2 rather than get beat 3-2."

Lambert's West Brom counterpart, Steve Clarke will be looking to add to his impressive record in derby matches as the Baggies strive to build on their start to the campaign of 10 points from the opening five games.

"My record [as coach] with Liverpool in the Merseyside derby, which is the most recent, was pretty good," Clarke said. "We played them four times and beat them [Everton] three times and drew once.

"When at Newcastle, I remember the night Ruud Gullit resigned as manager and we lost 2-1 at home to Sunderland. But we [St Mirren] did all right against Greenock Morton and Tottenham was the one Chelsea saw as their big derby and my record in that was pretty good.

"We went something like 29 games unbeaten in them at a certain stage when I was playing."

Clarke also has no doubts that Albion goalkeeper Ben Foster's performance during the Capital One defeat by Liverpool was a one-off.

"We just put it down as one of those nights because it's very unlike Ben to make one mistake, never mind a couple of mistakes," Clarke said. "It was all from long shots so I'm not sure whether the ball was moving around. I also think he was a little bit unsighted on the goal.

"Ben is an experienced goalkeeper and I've got absolutely no worries about Ben Foster at the weekend."

You can catch up on all the latest team news ahead of the match on See below for team news and videos of manager press conferences.

Matchday Live also offers background on previous meetings between the two sides and you can test your skills by predicting the score in the Barclays Fanzone.

Sunday 30rd September 2012



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Key Points

  • Villa manager Paul Lambert will make sure his team attack West Brom
  • Follow all the team news and pre-match press conferences here
  • Matchday Live offers live commentaries and photos of the matches as they happen followed by reports