Richards inspires reserves

Ipswich Reserves 1Portsmouth Reserves 0By Derek DavisChief Football WriterMATT Richards inspired the Blues reserves to their first home win of the season with a poacher's goal in a game that may have unearthed another young gem for the Blues.

Ipswich Reserves 1

Portsmouth Reserves 0

By Derek Davis

Chief Football Writer


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MATT Richards inspired the Blues reserves to their first home win of the season with a poacher's goal in a game that may have unearthed another young gem for the Blues.

Former Arsenal youngster Dean McDonald showed more good skills in his second game on trial with Town after impressing at Watford last week.

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The tricky wide man went close to getting on the goal sheet when he cut inside on his right foot but dragged his left-footed shot inches wide.

Although only a sparse crowd turned up, they were thrilled by the 18-year-old who was prepared to do his share of tracking back and tackling too.

Richards was playing on the left-side of midfield, watched by Blues boss Joe Royle who feels that could be his best position.

The 20-year-old imposed himself on the game and, helped by fellow first teamers, Dean Bowditch, Pablo Counago. Lewis Price and Scott Mitchell, led a willing young reserve side to a good performance that deserved only their second win of the season.

Richards reacted the quickest to pounce on hesitancy in Pompey defence, who failed to deal with Bowditch's flick-on from Mitchell's long throw and lashed the ball into the roof of the net from eight yards.

Up until then it had been Pompey with the better chances

Mark Burchill, who spent a spell on loan from Celtic with Town during the Premiership days, hit a powerful 25-yard shot but Lewis Price got behind it well.

Liam Horsed delivered a dangerous low cross along the face of the goal but no Pompey forward could connect.

Garvan, operating in central midfield, flashed a shot just wide, while Counago, leading a three man forward line, was off target early on and another just over the bar moments before half-time.

The Spaniard had another effort saved by the keeper.

Skipper Mitchell drilled a shot over the bar from 20 yards as the Blues finished the game comfortably on top.

He marshalled a defence that, while never really stretched by Pompey's lightweight attack, were disciplined and organised.

Centre half Ben Patten made a wonderfully timed tackle in the area to dispossess James Keene as he raced through on goal.

Ipswich Town Reserves: Price, Mitchell, Craig, Manning, Collins, Patten, McDonald, Garvan, Counago (Knights, 57), Bowditch, Richards. Subs: Flack, Atay, Casement, Sobers.

Portsmouth Reserves: Guatelli, Curtis, Angus (Cousins, 60) S Harris, Day, Duffy, Cooper, Wilson (Carter-Harris, 74) Keene, Burchill, Horsed. Subs: Settle, D Harris.

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