'He sees a pass that others don't' – Hurst ready to call on Dozzell again
PUBLISHED: 16:24 18 October 2018 | UPDATED: 16:24 18 October 2018
© Copyright Stephen Waller
Andre Dozzell is raring to go again following his England Under-20 debut, says Ipswich Town manager Paul Hurst.
The talented teenage midfielder, 19, played 80 minutes as Paul Simpson’s men played out a 1-1 friendly draw in the Czech Republic on Monday night.
It follows hot-on-the-heels of his long-awaited return to Championship action following a long-term knee injury, that sidelined him for the entirety of last season; first as a late substitute in the 2-0 home defeat to Middlesbrough and then as a starter in the 3-2 win at Swansea.
“We’ve only had him back in today (Thursday), but he looked good and seems in good spirits,” said Hurst.
“Their (England’s) initial thought was just having him in for training, but I was more than happy he got some more minutes in his legs.
“He seems fine, seems in a good place and, like the rest of the players, is raring to get back into action after what seems like a long, long time since that victory at Swansea.”
Dozzell, along with Town team-mate Flynn Downes, was initially only due to train with the England squad at St George’s Park. However, a minor knock suffered by Town’s on-loan Chelsea midfielder Trevoh Chalobah meant he was called into action.
“I think he has been frustrated he hasn’t been able to play more minutes sooner,” said Hurst, who eased Dozzell back into action with several games for the Under-23s.
“I never get the feeling that Andre struggles with confidence, but I am sure being away with England will have done that no harm.”
He added: “A major strength of Andre’s is seeing a pass that perhaps others don’t. How quickly he sees a situation stops defenders stopping the attack.
“With Freddie Sears’ clever movement up front, that sort of combination gives you two lads who have got bright minds in terms of the football. I think Kayden (Jackson), numerous players really, could benefit from that.
Asked if he had a decision to make regarding Dozzell’s inclusion at the weekend, Hurst replied: “I’ll probably have a conversation with him, but, from what I’ve seen at least, he’s in a good place. Hopefully that’s the case.”
Town return to action on Saturday with the visit of QPR to Portman Road. Captain Luke Chambers is among those to have been affected by illness this week, while Hurst says a player – who he didn’t want to name – faces a late fitness test after suffering an injury in training earlier.