Debut goal for defender

PIM Balkestein marked his first team debut with a goal to set the Blues on their way to a hard earned win.

Derek Davis

PIM Balkestein marked his first team debut with a goal to set the Blues on their way to a hard earned win.

The Dutch defender who cost Ipswich £180,000 from Heerenveen slotted in well alongside skipper Alex Bruce.

It was hoped Gareth McAuley would be making his bow but a slight knock kept him out and he may make his debut in his home country next week when Town go to Belfast on a three match trip.


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Richard Naylor is also suffering from a slight injury hiccup which has delayed his return.

The Bees buzzed about more purposefully in the first half and winger Marvin Williams caused problems down their right flank.

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Shane Supple made good early save from Charlie MacDonald, one of six new signings starting for the Bees in the first half and denied Moses Ademola, while Alex Bruce and Balkestein made good blocks.

Nathan Elder found the Town defence wanting but headed a Sam Wood corner over the bar. Ipswich were exposed again when Marvin Williams got behind the back line and crossed for Elder who again headed over.

It was not until the 22nd minute that Town created a chance.

Clever play from Pablo Counago and Alan Quinn set up Walters whose angled shot was pushed wide by Ben Hamer.

The Spaniard has been accused in the past of returning from the summer break in poor shape but he looked among the sharpest and liveliest of Blues players in this, the first team's first pre-season friendly.

Counago set up Garvan who hit a screamer from 30 yards which was tipped over Hamer made another decent save to push away a 25-yard Miller free kick.

Garvan has still not signed the extension of his contract which is on offer although he still has a year remaining on the existing deal anyway.

Brentford made wholesale changes at half-time, almost the whole side, and Town took advantage when Balkestien headed in a Chris Casement cross in the 58th minute.

Two minutes later Town made five more changes after Danny Haynes had replaced David Norris at half-time.

Norris, who missed the latter part of the season with a heel injury, looked fully recovered, while Haynes showed why clubs like Portsmouth are keeping a close eye on him.

Former Colchester United and Hibs keeper Simon Brown made twice made good saves Jordan Rhodes stood firm to twice deny Haynes too. Brown also saved a Haynes penalty after he had been tripped by Brett Johnson but the mercurial winger was not to be denied and nodded in the rebound to wrap up the win.

Brentford first half: Hamer; Newton, Mills, Karleigh Osborne, Brett Johnson; Williams, Bean, Smith, Wood; MacDonald (Ademola) Elder: Second half: Brown; Ruddick, Franks, Davis, Connell, Ibe, Ademola, O'Connor, Poole, Johnson, Wood.

Ipswich Town: Supple; Casement (Peters, 72), Bruce (Robinson, 80) Balkestein (Smith, 69) Wright; Norris (Haynes, 46) Miller (Trotter, 60) Garvan (Shumi, 60) Quinn (Roberts, 60) Walters Lee, 60) Counago (Rhodes, 60).

Referee: Mr J Singh.

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