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Defender Smith and Academy Scholars Released
Tuesday, 19th Mar 2019 18:03

TWTD understands Town have told central defender Chris Smith and a number of academy scholars that they will be released at the end of the season.

Smith, last season's U23s skipper, signed a one-year contract last April with an option for a further season which the club have chosen not to exercise.

The 21-year-old, who has been out of U23s action of late due to injury, made one first-team appearance for the Blues, at Crystal Palace in the Carabao Cup last season, having come through the academy.

The former Kesgrave High School pupil spent much of last season on loan at Chelmsford City in the Vanarama National League South and had a short spell with Aldershot in the division above at the start of this campaign.

Meanwhile, academy scholars Mitchell Ware, Ross Marshall, Luca Vega, Kian Ronan and Ashton Henry have also been told they will not be kept on at the end of the season.

Ware, 19, is a goalkeeper from Grays in Essex who was recently on loan at Haverhill Rovers, while Marshall, 19, and Vega, 18, who has been with Town since he was seven, are both central defenders.

Harlow-born right-back or midfielder Ronan, 18, is currently with the Gibraltar U21s squad, while Henry, 18, is also a right-sided full-back and has been with Town since the U10s.

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herfie added 18:27 - Mar 19
Cannot but feel sympathy for these lads - particularly for Smith, who I remember did ever so well in that FA Cup match against C Palace.

However, also shows what a tough, unsentimental, profession today’s game is; tough decisions have to made against that old enemy: money. Also tough on their families.

Really hope all those to be released manage to find another route to allow them to stay in the game, at some level.

bontcho added 18:34 - Mar 19
Good luck to all of these lads in their careers. Once a blue, always a blue. Unless you join the lot up the road of course.

BlueandTruesince82 added 19:26 - Mar 19
Stems from relegation, hope they all get hooked up somewhere.


Dissboyitfc added 19:37 - Mar 19
how much this is due to relegation? i am not so sure it is. Its tough but it happens every year that youngsters get released. Might be down to attitude, size ability lots of things. I hope they all go on to prove themselves and find away to stay in the game!

Its a tough industry!

Warkys_Tash added 22:00 - Mar 19
Very Surprised at Chris Smith, thought he was touted as one for our future??

MrTown added 22:01 - Mar 19
Think we will regret the Chris Smith one.

Out and out defender. Very much from the Berra school of defending.

Hiltzkooler added 23:48 - Mar 19
Heads up lads, find your way....be successful...be your best...sh!t day today, tomorrow will be better...

philwhelansdegree added 00:47 - Mar 20
Luca Vega was on loan at my local club Lowestoft earlier in the season. Did OK, but didnt look anything special. Ware and Marshall were on loan at Lowestoft last season. Both didnt fairly well. Thought Marshall looked the best of the three. He may have a career at Conference or League 2 level

BlueySwede added 07:48 - Mar 20
We have lot of exciting promising talent, can´t keep them all (we are not Chelsea...) Chris Smith is the biggest surprise, have not heard about the others.

Moisha added 08:57 - Mar 20
This is nothing new, or to do with relegation. Not every academy player makes it.

Only this morning on TalkSPORT Alan Brazil was speaking about when he was a youth product at Ipswich and made lots of friends, but only he, Terry Butcher, and Russell Osman made it from their intake.

Harsh realities of football but hopefully they will get picked up elsewhere and still make a career out of it.

bluejake78 added 09:29 - Mar 20
Chin up lads.
Go and prove yourselves.You won't be the 1st.

BlueSwede added 11:48 - Mar 20
We have to trust the ones who see the players day in and day out. Probably know best.

Len_Brennan added 12:48 - Mar 20
Disappointing for Chris Smith certainly, as he was thereabouts on the cusp of the first team squad, but ultimately not deemed good enough to push his way in over the coming years. Harsh realities are just that.
In terms of centre halves, we do have 2 young guys coming through who should be making the match day squad, or better, next season in Luke Woolfenden & Corrie Ndaba, both of whom are rated highly. With Pennington & Collins out of the picture (unlikely to drop another division/too costly/injury concerns) and the option of Knudsen at left side also going, those 2 lads really have a chance of getting league minutes, if they take it. Nsiala is still newish to us, although experienced at Division 1 level & so should be an asset; but of course with Bart likely to leave, the new contract from Chambers does make sense in order to provide some stability, leadership & organisation to the rearguard. He has his faults, but he will be hugely important in bringing through the next phase of Ipswich Town defenders.

BlueandTruesince82 added 14:32 - Mar 20
I'm not saying its just relegation but we usually give youngsters chance to develop.

Chris Smith prime example. I think he would be given another year if we looked like a champ club next year

IPSWICHMOUSE added 16:21 - Mar 20
Sorry for the young lads who are'nt going to make the grade.. I think if they have been at the club from ages 7 & 10 we have given them a fair crack at the whip & some!! Long time being coached but not getting the end result....COYB...

Butcherboy added 17:06 - Mar 20
Harsh on Smith who I hear has been suffering from a bad back injury for most of the season. Was injured at the end of last season when he was due to make his league debut and he’s still out. Seems short sighted to me. I wish the lad well because being told you’re being let go when you’re injured has to be the worst - it literally adds insult to injury.

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