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Woolfenden Buzzing After Big Win on Championship Debut
Monday, 30th Apr 2018 00:16

Defender Luke Woolfenden was “buzzing” after making his Championship bow from the start of Saturday’s 4-0 victory at Reading.

The 19-year-old was recalled from his loan spell with Vanarama National League on Friday and with Cameron Carter-Vickers and fellow youngster Chris Smith having picked up knocks went straight into the team at the Madejski Stadium.

“Buzzing, 4-0, the last three came late on, one after the other, didn’t they?" Woolfenden, whose previous senior appearances for the Blues were one start and one sub appearance in the Carabao Cup in August, told BBC Radio Suffolk reflecting on a remarkable first league game for Town immediately afterwards.

"We took our chances clinically one after the other. We all put a shift in today, enjoying our football,”

“I really enjoyed the game from start to finish, I didn’t want the game to end when it finished, I was having a great time.”

How did he rate his performance? “I thought I was alright! Yeah, I was alright. The clean sheet was good.”

Woolfenden had praise for Adam Webster, stand-in skipper Jonas Knudsen and Jordan Spence: “Webby, Jonas and Spence were brilliant, they helped me through the game massively.

“Even before the game Spence was talking to me, telling me what to do and how to cope with it.”

The Ipswich-born defender played on the right of Town’s back three and says centre-half is his best role.

“I’ve been playing right-back [for Bromley] but I definitely see myself as a centre-back, I think that’s definitely my best position, but I’ll play wherever.”

He says he found out he was coming back to Town the day before the match having been with the Ravens since just before Christmas: “There was talk of it about a month ago but the thinking was to just stay at Bromley until the end of the season.

“Then on Friday I drove up to Bromley and I got a call to say, ‘Come back, you’re going to Reading’.”

His return to the Blues means he’ll miss out on next month’s FA Trophy final when Bromley face Brackley at Wembley.

“I didn’t want to come back just to sit on the bench,” he continued. “I think that’s why they left it so late because they knew I’d played the last two games [at Bromley].

“[The loan spell has] progressed me massively, they’ve all helped me a great deal, [manager] Neil Smith, [academy director] Mark Hammond and [player-coach] Alan Dunne have helped me a lot.

“In the first couple of games I made a couple of mistakes but it’s just a learning curve, they want you to learn. They see the potential in you and they want it to come out. It’s proper men’s football, it just helps a lot.”

Having started the Carabao Cup tie at Crystal Palace after making his senior debut as a sub at Luton in the previous round, he admits he felt he might have been involved with the Blues first team before this point in the season.

“I thought when we had a few injuries I might have got maybe more chances,” he continued. “But I was always hoping to go out on loan at the start of the season, so to do that was good.”

Woolfenden says his father made it along to the Madejski Stadium, but his mother didn’t make the trip: “Just my dad, my mum’s probably going to be kicking herself just sitting at home!”

Regarding the celebrations with the 1,233 travelling fans, he added: “I think everyone just loved that game, just enjoying their football and it all came out when we scored the fourth goal.”

Looking ahead to next Sunday’s final game of the season against Middlesbrough at Portman Road, Woolfenden says he’ll be looking to make his home debut with all three of his games for the Blues so far having been away: “I definitely want to start that game.”

Elsewhere, Boro boss Tony Pulis has said he’ll consider resting some of his squad next week with the fifth-placed Teessiders having already confirmed a place in the top six.

“We’re delighted that we’re now in the play-offs,” Pulis said. “Now, it’s a case of looking forward to the Ipswich game, and then going on from there.

“One or two players might need a rest, and one or two players might be taken out of the Ipswich game. Alternatively, I might go with the same team.

“I’ll have a good look at it next week and have a good chat with the boys, and see where they are. Then we’ll look forward to those play-off games.

“The most important thing is that we’re right when we turn up here for the play-offs. The Ipswich game is important because it’s the next game, and anyone who knows me as a man or a manager will know that every game I go in to, I want to win.

"But it’s about finding the right balance, and concentrating on what is really important for us.”

Meanwhile, Blues midfielder Andre Dozzell is continuing his comeback from the ruptured cruciate knee ligament he suffered on the opening day of the season, using the facilities at Pipers Vale Gymnastics Club.

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HarryfromBath added 00:32 - Apr 30
I watched Luke at Palace in the League Cup earlier in season and on Saturday. In both games he was rock-solid, calm and composed, and he unfailingly did the simple things well. I also found these kind words about him on Bromley's message-board...

"Big thanks to Woolfenden for playing a not inconsiderable part in us getting to Wembley", "He has been an excellent part of the team and deserved to be involved at Wembley. Good luck for the future Luke, you’ll go far in the game I’m sure", "Welcome back here anytime."

"Luke did a good job for us and is going to be a very good player", "He more than played his part in getting Bromley to the [FA Trophy] final", "Well done to Woolfie for a clean sheet in his first League start for ipswich, I'm sure he will break into the first team next season." Enough said.

Guthrum added 00:41 - Apr 30
Had a good game on Saturday. Didn't in the least look out of place at this level.

PJewellisaGod added 01:01 - Apr 30
Hopefully we will see a lot more of the Wolf next season. Had a really good game on Saturday and looked rock-solid. New Manager should be putting him down as an automatic first-team member (if I was Manager, I would). Good on Klug for bringing him back, he could see we needed reinforcement and made the decision.


Karlosfandangal added 01:59 - Apr 30
If Smith was fit would he have been re called

Lots of good things said about Luke on here ....... So Smith and Wolfe Kenlock and Webster the future looks good at the back

Maybe letting Tommy go was the right thing to do

clint_eastwood added 04:35 - Apr 30
What a name!! Woolfie!!! Love it!

Steve_ITFC_Sweden added 06:11 - Apr 30
Great prospect. I wonder how long it will be before the big teams come sniffing around. I really hope we will have a new policy of keeping our best youngsters and developing a team around them, not selling them off to make some quick cash.

trncbluearmy added 06:37 - Apr 30
Looks very calm and assured,very impressive, and and a big lad.
Just regarding the Andre in the vid.did a few of those exercises in the forces never as quick though,he`s like lightening!!, great to see the progress.

ITFC have so much talent at the yoof level it`s frightening!!


itfcserbia added 06:44 - Apr 30
Great potential this lad, gotta love him.
Meanwhile, Dozzell looks pretty good in that video.

christiand added 06:55 - Apr 30
Very encouraging that we have so many youngsters pushing for first team starts. Just provides an injection of enthusiasm and anticipation for an interesting summer after what was becoming a season of angst. Terrific to see Dozzell on the mend, reassuring that he still has another three months to work on his strength and fitness prior to the new season kicking off.

brassy added 08:06 - Apr 30
the future looks promising COYB.

martin587 added 08:40 - Apr 30
I felt he put in a very good solid performance doing the basic things and not being too clever.Still a lot to learn but a great future prospect.We have some exceptional young lads coming through the ranks now and the future is beginning to look bright.

dirtydingusmagee added 08:59 - Apr 30
IMPRESSED, suddenly the whole feeling has changed, the gloom, frustration, anger, has gone, things looking bright, just pray we get the right manager.

OwainG1992 added 09:28 - Apr 30
When it comes to these good young players we have and needing a manager who'll give them a chance. I know he's ruled himself out but would be upset if Klug got the job?

TimmyH added 10:04 - Apr 30
The wooolllfffff!!!!!...yep will do him the power of good!

cooper4england added 10:05 - Apr 30
Dozzell auditioning for Monty Python remake of Ministry of Funny walks.

Paddy39 added 10:49 - Apr 30
Don't forget to HOWL when Woolfie scores.

barrystedmunds added 11:08 - Apr 30
I know he’s gone now and we move on but ask yourself, would this have happened if Monotonous Mick had been in charge? He’d have probably played Freddy at right back!!!! This is an example, in my mind, of the Ipswich way.

Essexnblue added 11:26 - Apr 30
All of this has happened by luck rather than judgment, but it shows what talent the next manager has at his disposal.
If Chambers or CCV was fit then Woolfy would still have been at Bromley.
If Skuse or Hyam were fit then Nydam and Folami would have been on the bench.
This has been shown by Klugs team selection, however it produces an interesting dilemma for the new guy as these kids clearly have ability.

Kikapu added 13:01 - Apr 30
Absolutely right, Essexnblue, but so pleased to see the youngsters take their chance so well.
Huge number of our regular players injured, but that's the Championship for you, the toughest league anywhere.

blueboy1981 added 14:19 - Apr 30
Nice one Luke - definitely one for the FUTURE of ITFC.

dirtydingusmagee added 14:22 - Apr 30
the youngsters know they have something to prove ,some of the ''old school ,good blokes'' seem to think they don't have to prove anything and were automatic selection. Competition for places is always a good thing. Pleased that not only did Luke get his chance, he showed he was was up to it, and shouldn't be overlooked .GOOD LUCK LUKE .

Seasider added 15:24 - Apr 30
I can remember much discussion on here as to whether we miss Chambers or Skuse on the odd occasion they didn't play under Mick, either because of illness or .injury . Well neither of them played on Saturday ?

I am not saying that we should get rid necessarily;but I think they are not indispensable,and needn't be picked for every game regardless

Turning to Luke Woolfenden,agree that he looks a class act,and could turn out to be a great asset for ITFC in the future;along with several others.

I mentioned a while back that there were several lads in the pipeline who had good physique,and Luke fits that category.I felt this season that we are lacking a bit of hight,especially up front.In no way do I want Portman Rd to be 'The Land of the Giants';as Joe used to describe Stoke when he was manager here;but it is nice to have a mixture,which gives the players more options,as don't think we have had a player up front since Murph left who can provide headers and make the ball stick when required.

Notice the 'Early Bird' deadline as been extended because of the very high volume of season ticket enquiries/ renewals;but only until Wednesday.


masetheace added 18:02 - Apr 30
Lets not forget that all these youngsters were brought through under Mick's stewardship !

dirtydingusmagee added 19:50 - Apr 30
Mick ! who was Mick ?

dirtydingusmagee added 19:58 - Apr 30
The Wolf , looks like in a year or two will be quite a tough cookie ,he may be another ''chopper'' Jefferson in the making ....''they shall not pass !''

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