MX23RW : Thursday, February 21 14:47:12

Paul Lambert: Mike Williamson must "prove" worth

Wolverhampton Wanderers head coach Paul Lambert says that centre-back Mike Williamson must "prove" his fitness in the remaining games of the season in order to earn a new deal.

Wolverhampton Wanderers head coach Paul Lambert has said that veteran centre-back Mike Williamson must prove his worth in order to earn a new deal at the club.

The 33-year-old moved to Molineux from Newcastle United on an 18-month contract in January 2016 but almost immediately picked up a hamstring injury that kept him on the sidelines for 14 months.

Williamson has played three games since returning to action and while he has impressed Lambert with his performances, the manager has urged him to continue to demonstrate his worth in the remaining games of the season if he wants a new deal.

"He has to prove his fitness and sustain it. He knows that," Lambert told the Express & Star. "He's not a young player coming through learning the ropes, he knows exactly the game and how he wants to play it and how his body feels.

"Whether he can do half a dozen games in a row I'm not sure, because the length of time he's been out is huge. I think he can get away with one or two games. Whether he can do back-to-back is a big thing for him at the minute after so long out.

"You can get away with him at Reading or Stoke, but the problem is when someone's been out for that length of time you tend to find they get little niggles elsewhere, although his main injury feels good, because the muscle aren't trained. For a footballer not to have a pre-season is a big thing because you're not conditioned."

After being rested for the game at Brentford on Tuesday, Williamson is expected to be back in contention for the trip to Fulham on Saturday.


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Paul Lambert looks on prior to kickoff during the FA Cup fift- round match between Blackburn Rovers and West Ham United on February 21, 2016
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Tables
TeamPWDLFAGDPTS
1Manchester CityMan City27212474205465
2Liverpool26205159154465
3Tottenham HotspurSpurs26200654252960
4Manchester UnitedMan Utd26156552351751
5Arsenal26155653371650
6Chelsea26155645291650
7Wolverhampton WanderersWolves2611693433139
8Watford2610793434037
9Everton2796123639-333
10West Ham UnitedWest Ham2696113239-733
11Bournemouth26103133747-1033
12Leicester CityLeicester2695123134-332
13Crystal Palace2676132734-727
14Brighton & Hove AlbionBrighton2676132839-1127
15Burnley2676132947-1827
16Newcastle UnitedNewcastle2667132234-1225
17Cardiff CityCardiff2674152447-2325
18Southampton2659122844-1624
19Fulham2645172558-3317
20Huddersfield TownHuddersfield2625191448-3411

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