Town shoot down Gunners

BARCLAYCARD PREMIER RESERVE LEAGUE (SOUTH)Ipswich Town Reserves 3Arsenal Reserves 0A new-look Martijn Reuser and John McGreal tucked away goals as a strong Ipswich Town reserve side overwhelmed Arsenal 3-0 at Portman Road last night, writes David Vincent.


Ipswich Town Reserves 3

Arsenal Reserves 0

A new-look Martijn Reuser and John McGreal tucked away goals as a strong Ipswich Town reserve side overwhelmed Arsenal 3-0 at Portman Road last night, writes David Vincent.

Both served notice that they are ready to play an important in Town's push for the play-offs with classy performances after their time out through injury.

McGreal scored Town's first-half goal with a fine glancing header which left French keeper Guilluame Warmuz helpless in the Arsenal goal and Reuser scored from the penalty shot after his powerful 25-yard free-kick struck an Arsenal hand in the wall.

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The icing on the cake for Town was a poacher's goal for 16-year-old England youth striker Dean Bowditch.

It was a closer game than the scoreline suggested but James Pullen in the Ipswich goal wasn't about to be beaten and in front of him the defence was superbly marshalled by McGreal in his first 75 minutes back after a lengthy absence.

Arsenal had looked busy going forward and Pullen had to react smartly to push a stinging cross-shot by Jeremie Aliadiere over the bar in the first minute.

McGreal, up for a free-kick, stung the Arsenal keeper's hand with a strong effort after six minutes.

At the other end Pullen had to collect a chip from David Bentley and then Freddie Ljungberg tried a shot which hit Richard Naylor and deflected towards goal but Pullen grabbed it.

Bloomfield's powerful effort struck the Ryan Garry, one of many young international players on show, and deflected behind for a Town corner.

The corner was initially cleared but Bloomfield linked up with Ian Westlake and the curling cross was perfect for McGreal to rise and head home, after 39 minutes.

Town were well on top as the half ended.

At half-time Ipswich brought on England youth striker Dean Bowditch for Finidi George while Arsenal took off the disappointing Ljungberg and replaced him with another Swede, Sebastian Larsson.

Arsenal looked good going forward with Jermaine Brown and David Bentley impressive but made few clear chances.

McGreal had to produce a last ditch tackle when the ball deflected to Brown six yards out and he looked certain to score after 50 minutes. At the other end Bowditch saw a shot saved at the end of a slick Town passing move.

And Bowditch showed a maturity way beyond his years.

Arsenal did have some chances, a Garry header from a corner that was just wide and a drive by Bentley that Pullen needed two touches to save, but more Town goals always looked likely.

Bowditch turned Garry on the left touchline and curled a cross behind the defence just out of reach of Armstrong who had a clear sight of goal.

The second goal came on 74 minutes. Armstrong was wrestled to the ground by Garry, who was booked, and Reuser stepped up to take the free kick.

He whacked it at the defensive wall and appealed for handball when it was blocked. Referee Russell had no hesitation in awarding the penalty and Reuser himself smashed it in.

James Pullen stood large to block a Bentley powerdrive with his chest before Ipswich grabbed their third.

Lee Beevers turned his defender twice before curling in a cross which Alun Armstrong headed against the bar. Bowditch waited for it to bounce and then fired it into the roof of the net.

Ipswich: Pullen, Beevers, Richards, Bloomfield, Naylor, McGreal, Abidallah, Westlake, Armstrong, George, Reuser, subs used, Bowditch, Hogg, Murray.

Arsenal: Warmuz, Hoyte, Nicolau, Fowler, Garry, Simek, Spicer, Ljungberg, Brown, Aliadiare, Bentley, subs used Larsson.

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