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Huws Returns as U23s Beat Owls Despite Ending Match With Nine Men
Tuesday, 26th Mar 2019 15:33 by Blair Ferguson

Emyr Huws completed his first 61 minutes since August as Town’s U23s beat Sheffield Wednesday 3-1 at Playford Road to all but confirm their place in the end-of-season play-offs, despite finishing the match with nine men.

Barry Cotter and Corrie Ndaba had already put Ipswich 2-1 up when an injury to academy youngster Tommy Hughes saw him replaced by England U18 international Dylan Crowe, the Blues' final sub in only the 58th minute.

Huws, who looked uninjured as he left the pitch, was taken off three minutes later, presumably in a planned move, leaving Blues with 10 men before Crowe himself had to come off through injury in the 74th minute.

A goal from Tyreece Simpson made the half an hour with reduced numbers easier with the Owls, who are coached by ex-Blues left-back Neil Thompson, only mounting a threat in the last five minutes.

The victory virtually ensures at least second spot and a spot in the Professional Development League Two play-offs with third-placed Coventry City, who play Bristol City on Friday afternoon, now needing to take full points from their final four games in order to overhaul Town’s current points total.

The afternoon started very differently for Wednesday who took the game to Ipswich early on. Idris El Mizouni needed to clear Alex Hunt’s freekick from creeping in and Pat Webber did well to get across the box and prevent Omar Damba from having a shot from a dangerous position inside the area.

The Blues got through the early pressure and came close to grabbing an opener when Tunisia U23 international El Mizouni picked out Cotter on the right wing, with his first touch taking him past his man and into the box where he cut the ball back to Tristan Nydam who guided it over the bar.

Gerard Nash’s men continued to look comfortable going forward and Wednesday’s goalkeeper, Cameron McCulloch, got down well to push El Mizouni’s powerful low strike out for a corner in the 11th minute.

Ipswich made their pressure count four minutes later when Cotter picked the ball up at right-back and drove towards the box passed two men before hitting a powerful shot towards the right corner from 25 yards with McCulloch’s touch taking it in off of the post.

The Owls fought back less than ten minutes later with Joe West’s freekick making it past the Ipswich wall and into the bottom right corner of the goal to draw the scores level.

Kai Brown had the chance to put Town back in front before the break after El Mizouni played him in on goal, but a lack of composure saw the ball rise over the bar.

Unlike the first half, Ipswich were quick to get started in the second, Bailey Clements having replaced set-to-depart Chris Smith, playing his first game after a spell out injured, in what looked a planned move and Lounes Foudil taking over from El Mizouni in one which appeared less premeditated.

Sub Foudil sent in a deep corner from the right and found skipper Corrie Ndaba unmarked and the Irish defender volleyed in from six yards out at the back post in the 48th minute.

It was here that the game became more difficult for Ipswich with Huws exiting the field of play with 61 minutes gone, as had presumably been planned, after all three substitutes had already been made, Crowe having replaced the injured Hughes on 58.

The difference wasn’t noticeable with 10 men, however, and the lead was extended when Nydam’s freekick towards the bottom right corner was pushed into the path of Simpson, who calmly stroked the ball into the goal.

Ipswich were then forced into playing the last 16 minutes with nine men following Crowe’s injury, but it wasn’t until late on that keeper Toby Egan was required to make a double save after Preslav Borvkov hit the bar with a header from a corner.

No one would have expected Huws’s inclusion in the game to be so disruptive but the Wales international put in a steady, if not understandably tentative, performance during his hour on the pitch.

Town’s U23s are now eight points clear at the top of the table with three left to play and seem certain to be in the play-offs and odds-on to finish top of their division.

U23s: Egan, Cotter, Webber, C Smith (Clements 46), Ndaba (c), Huws, Hughes (Crowe 58), Nydam, El Mizouni (Foudil 46), Simpson, K Brown. Unused: Alley, McGavin, T Smith.

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midastouch added 15:53 - Mar 26
The cotton wool worked!

whosroundisitanyway added 15:56 - Mar 26
Planned move???!!

midastouch added 16:01 - Mar 26
Planned move = conspiracy theory or general TWTD comment section cynicism which I've been known to catch a dose of on more than one past occasion! :-)

midastouch added 16:04 - Mar 26
Over to you Tom Adeymi...
But Tom Adeymi, He Don't Play Very Many!

leftie1972 added 16:13 - Mar 26
And just when is Huws and Adeyemis contracts up?

midastouch added 16:19 - Mar 26
@ leftie1972, in the year 2080 apparently.

runningout added 16:41 - Mar 26
a few players owe us games. Hope they do the business for themselves, and good luck to em

ArnieM added 16:44 - Mar 26
“ 9 men , we’ve only got 9 men,
We’ve only got 9 men “!!

TimmyH added 16:56 - Mar 26
Don't hold your breath before Emyr has another 'set back'...

PortmanTerrorist added 17:00 - Mar 26
Looked uninjured. Something to cling on to for Emyr. U23 minutes are probably all he needs to worry about this Arab. Get pre season down and rip up league 1 with support from Downes, Bishop, Dozzell, Nolan and Skuse. Hopefully Sears and Keane will be available and just need a bit of help at the back and we could be really decent. Come on Emyr....get involved!

PhilTWTD added 17:10 - Mar 26

Not sure why it should be quite such a surprise that a player who has been out for more than a year was only given an hour of his first game back. I'm sure that would have been the plan.

leftie1972 added 21:43 - Mar 26

leftie1972 added 21:47 - Mar 26
They both really do need to repay the club in terms of value for money in terms of games played.I’ll be interested to hear what terms are requiested for life in League 1?

kingcarloss added 08:38 - Mar 27
Totally unrelated to the game but I wondered why Neil Thompson was in Isaac's on Monday night. Top man helped him out of his cab he couldn't work the sliding door 🙈

whosroundisitanyway added 12:40 - Mar 27
OK, but 3 minutes after they've used their last sub???

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