Elliott Hewitt delights Mick McCarthy but boss warns it might not be the right time for teen
06:05 21 November 2012
MICK McCarthy has spoken of his excitement over the progress of highly-rated defender Elliott Hewitt.
But Town fans hoping to see the right-back start for the struggling Blues are likely to be disappointed after McCarthy questioned whether the 18-year-old was ready to be thrown into a relegation dog-fight.
Hewitt has yet to kick a Championship ball in anger after a stuttering start to his Town career, caused by a slow recovery from hip surgery – prior to signing with Town.
But the Welsh Under-21 right-back has slowly completed his rehabilitation with Hewitt named on the bench for the Blues’ last two matches.
McCarthy has admitted he has been impressed with Hewitt – a stand-out performer in the recent Under-21s match against Swansea and then in the Suffolk Premier Cup win over Walsham last week.
But he is likely to keep faith with new loan signing Bradley Orr who endured a nightmare debut against Lloyd Dyer during Leicester’s 6-0 thumping on Saturday. Hewitt, who was Paul Jewell’s first signing of the summer and who McCarthy had scouted during his time for Wolves, is clearly one-for-the-future.
McCarthy said: “I really like what I have seen of Elliott Hewitt.
“We was looking at him at Wolves, along with everyone else – there are no secrets in football when good players, especially good young lads, come onto the scene.
“I am looking forward to seeing him fully-fit. But is it the right time for him to go into the team? I’m not so sure.”
Hewitt signed for Ipswich for an undisclosed six-figure fee in May having played just 22 competitive games for his first club – Macclesfield.
Orr might have not won over many fans with his performance at the King Power Stadium, but McCarthy is likely to stick by his “hard-nosed” professionals for Saturday’s must-win home match against bottom club Peterborough.