Town's youngsters get impressive draw

A very young Ipswich Town reserve side battled back twice to draw 2-2 against a Hammers second string packed with internationals last night, writes David Vincent.

A very young Ipswich Town reserve side battled back twice to draw 2-2 against a Hammers second string packed with internationals last night, writes David Vincent.

Reserve team manager Steve McCall said: "We played very well. We were delighted with the lads. They showed great character to come back twice from being behind. In the end I was disappointed we did not take all three points.

"They were a very experienced team and we were a young side but that counts for nothing when you have this sort of application and great character.

"It was a good result and a good game of football."

The West Ham side included internationals Gary Breen, Don Hutchison and Christian Dailly as well as young stars like David Noble, snapped up from Arsenal, and named in the Scotland squad to face Iceland and Lithuaia in forthcoming Euro 2004 qualifiers yesterday.

In contrast Town's was an under-21 side and included schoolboy Aidan Collins. There were also two teenage trialists Ashley Probets and Alfie Kamara, from Arsenal, included.

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The Hammers took the lead in the first half with a cracking shot from winger Darryl McMahon but Town hit back when Northern Ireland striker Sam Morrow smashed in an angled drive that Raimond van der Gouw could not hold.

The home team went back ahead on the stroke of half-time through David Noble, one of two brothers in the side.

Town re-organised to 4-4-2 in the second half and played confidently and got their reward when big defender Lee Chaffey reacted first to hit a poor clearance through the crowded penalty box into the net.

Teams

West Ham: Van der Gouw, Schemmel, Minto, Noble, Breen, Delaney, Keen, D Noble, Dailly, Hutchison and McMahon.

Ipswich: Pullen, Mitchell, Chaffey, Kamara, Collins, Hogg, Abidallah, Westlake, Morrow, Bowditch and Probets. Sub used Boardley.

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