Skuse confident his partnership with Douglas will blossom

Jonathan Douglas in action at Reading

Jonathan Douglas in action at Reading

Ipswich Town midfielder Cole Skuse is confident his partnership with Jonathan Douglas will continue to improve as the season wears on.

Cole Skuse leaves the pitch with his knee well iced after injuring it at Leeds

Cole Skuse leaves the pitch with his knee well iced after injuring it at Leeds

The pair have been in the middle of Town’s midfield for the majority of the season, and having both been rested against Manchester United in midweek, look set to return to the starting line up against Bristol City at Portman Road tomorrow.

“I don’t know if he (Douglas) will like me saying this,” said Skuse. “But he’s an older head, he’s been around the block, he’s an established player and a very good one.

“He’s technically assured, and he’s very calm on the ball.”

Following Kevin Bru’s injury on the opening day of the season, Douglas and Skuse have partnered each other in Town’s last seven league games, winning four of them.

“Dougie is new into the group so we are still trying to work things out, and work each other’s games out,” said Skuse.

“The more and more we are playing together, the more we are getting to grips with each other.

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“I’m getting to know his runs, when he likes to drop, when he likes to run forward.

“It’s gone well so far and I think the manager is happy with the partnership.”

Popular midfielder Bru played the whole 90 minutes against the Red Devils, and will come into contention for a start tomorrow.

“He is a very good player,” said Skuse.

“He is a fans favourite as well, they love him. And for him to come back – alongside Bish (Teddy Bishop), who I don’t think is a million miles away – is a massive bonus for us.”

Giles Coke and Luke Hyam – although injured at the minute – are two other options for Town in central midfield, with Skuse welcoming competition for places.

“No disrespect to anyone from last year, but you can see the difference so far,” he continued.

“People saw that against Manchester United, who arguably played the strongest team they could.

“We had some lads who didn’t have much league or first-team experience, and more than held their own.

“It (their performance) wasn’t a surprise to us (senior players) in any way, I think it justified and showed the fans that the quality in depth is there.”

Another player who impressed Skuse on Wednesday evening, and will be striving for a start tomorrow, is Australian new boy Tommy Oar.

“He has not played for a long time, but the amount of energy he showed was impressive,” continued Skuse.

“He is a forward threat and he can be very happy with his performance.”

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