Academy kids are on target

Ipswich Town Res 2 Coventry City Res 0FIRST-half goals from two members of Ipswich Town's famed Academy won the Blues three Premiership Reserve League points at Portman Road last night.

By Elvin King

Ipswich Town Res 2 Coventry City Res 0

FIRST-half goals from two members of Ipswich Town's famed Academy won the Blues three Premiership Reserve League points at Portman Road last night.

Darryl Knights struck with a powerful low drive in the second minute, and central defender Chris Casement ventured forward to head in a Jim Magilton corner in stoppage time.

Against an inexperienced Coventry playing in front of their manager Micky Adams, Ipswich remained on top after the interval with Billy Clarke going close to adding to the lead on three occasions.

This was another example of the young talent coming off the Blues' production line, and in the latter stages only Lewis Price and Vemund Brekke Skard were out of their teens.

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Magilton asked to play and bossed the game for an hour with the enthusiasm of a teenager, while Adam Proudlock improved his match fitness and caught the eye with a number of defence-probing second-half passes.

Skard's tenacious nature and his ability to retain possession even if it means a two-yard pass will hold him in good stead when he finds the pace of the professional game.

He did well enough, but it was the dependable Casement and the lively Clarke who warmed the fans the most with their displays.

Knights drove home confidently from 18-yards to beat Jonathan Tuffrey, who had kept six clean sheets, and Casement rose above his marker to put the home side in the driving seat. Skard had earlier set up Clarke for a close-range effort that was pushed away by the keeper. Clarke shot over when put clear by Proudlock in the 59th minute, and he curled a shot against the far post with six minutes left. And in stoppage time he dragged his shot wide when put through by Edward Upson.

Upson was making his reserve debut and so was 16-year-old Kesgrave High School pupil Jordan Rhodes, who has been scoring freely in the Under-16s and Under-18s recently.

Ipswich Town: Price, Moore, Ainsley (sub Krause 60 mins), Brekke Skard, Casement, Short, Magilton (Upson 60), Trotter, Clarke, Proudlock (Rhodes 75) and Knights. Unused subs: Fenn and Leabon.

Coventry: Tuffey, McCrink, Bains, Turner, Layfield, Ogarro (Jones 62), Webb (Stringfellow 21), Hildreth, Davis, Sidhu and Lorougnon (Wall 62). Unused subs: Belford and Duggan.

Referee: Mr F Graham.

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