• FA Cup

We could do without FA Cup distraction - Lambert

ESPN staff
January 2, 2014
Lambert is feeling the pressure this season © Getty Images

Paul Lambert has admitted he would prefer not to have the distraction of the FA Cup - and believes many of his fellow Premier League managers would agree with him.

The Aston Villa manager, whose side take on Sheffield United in Saturday's third round tie, was asked in his pre-match press conference if the world's oldest cup competition was something top-flight clubs could do without.

He replied: "I think if you asked the majority of them, if they were being honest, they probably would do.

"Not just because of the money but survival in the league is vital."

The Scot added: "It is realistic. That is the nature of it. If anyone says any differently then I am not so sure they will be telling the truth because the Premier League is the most vital thing that anyone wants to get into and we are no different."

Villa began 2014 just six points above the relegation zone and it is Premier League survival, rather than the visit of the League One side, that is Lambert's priority.

He added: "Cup competitions, if you can get through, then absolutely I want to get through. I don't want to not get through but your main one is the league.

"We don't have a massive squad and points are really important. If you are honest enough people will say the same."

Aston Villa have won the FA Cup seven times, the last of which was in 1957. They last reached the final in 2000, where they lost to Chelsea.

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