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Doug Loft set to retain his Colchester United place against Plymouth

PUBLISHED: 14:33 20 April 2017 | UPDATED: 14:33 20 April 2017

Doug Loft, who scored in the first half for Colchester United during their first pre-season fixture of the season, at Maldon & Tiptree today.

Doug Loft, who scored in the first half for Colchester United during their first pre-season fixture of the season, at Maldon & Tiptree today.

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Doug Loft looks set to retain his place for Colchester United’s crunch home match against Plymouth on Saturday.

Loft started his first match since a 2-0 defeat at Portsmouth on August 20, after a near eight-month struggle against injury, in the 1-1 draw at Morecambe on Easter Monday.

Ex-Gillingham midfielder Loft replaced Tom Lapslie, who missed out with a sore shoulder sustained during the 1-1 draw with Doncaster on Good Friday.

Lapslie could well sit out this weekend as well, but Loft impressed on his comeback at the Globe Arena and is desperate to be involved in the U’s exciting late dash for the play-offs.

“We’ve had to look after Doug (Loft) in training,” explained boss John McGreal, following this morning’s training session at Florence Park, Tiptree.

“We had hoped to get 45 or 60 minutes out of him, at Morecambe, and yet he ended up staying on for 78 minutes.

“Tom (Lapslie) has had an X-ray on his shoulder, and I would say that he is still struggling.

“The shoulder was too sore and quite swollen before the Morecambe game, so he did not travel.

“Knowing Tom, he will want to play against Plymouth, but we want to risk him then missing the last couple of games as a result,” added McGreal.

The U’s are just two points adrift of the top seven, with three matches remaining,.

Ipswich Town U18 Academy boss Alan Lee is hoping his young charges can keep up the proud Blues tradition of success in youth football, with victory against Dagenham & Redbridge in the FA Youth Cup Fourth Round tonight, at Portman Road, 7pm ko.

Ipswich Town boss Mick McCarthy believes young defender Chris Smith returned from his loan spell at Chelmsford ‘more of a bloke’ and is hopeful he has a first team future.

Ipswich Town U23 3

QPR 0

Ben Morris hit a brace and Aaron Drinan opened his account in a blue shirt as an experienced Ipswich Town under 23 side eased past QPR 3-0 at Playford Road today, writes Kieren Standley.

FA Women’s Premier League

South East Division One

Ipswich Town 9

Haringey Borough 0

Ipswich Town Ladies bounced back from last Sunday’s disappointing FA Cup exit to Charlton with an emphatic 9-0 trouncing of bottom of the league Haringey Borough at the Goldstar Ground in Felixstowe, writes Kieren Standley.

Leeds United boss Thomas Christiansen is set to appeal the red card given to Eunan O’Kane following his altercation with Jonas Knudsen.

Episode Six: Stuart Watson and Andy Warren are back for another episode of the Kings of Anglia podcast to discuss the win over Leeds, Portman Road atmosphere and the latest transfer news.

Bersant Celina revealed just how much the adulation of the Ipswich Town fans means to him after his latest match-winning effort.

It’s that kind of season. Just when everything seems to be miserable, and the fans’ anger is mounting, along comes a victory to lighten the mood. At least temporarily, writes Northstander Terry Hunt.

Saturday was a much-needed day for Town fans, writes Karl Fuller.

Ipswich Town manager Mick McCarthy and former Blues boss Roy Keane could be in direct competition for the Republic of Ireland job if Martin O’Neill is lured to Stoke City, according to the Irish Sun.

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