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Lambert: Dozzell and Downes Could Be Driving Force in Town Midfield For Next Few Years
Friday, 29th Jan 2021 11:28

Blues manager Paul Lambert hopes midfield pair Flynn Downes and Andre Dozzell will be the driving force in the Town engine room for the next few years.

The duo have been playing alongside one another - as well as the likes of Luke Woolfenden, Jack Lankester, Tristan Nydam, Ben Morris and Brett McGavin - since they were academy schoolboys and are now key men in the first team squad.

Dozzell, 21, has played more regularly this season than in any previous campaign, while Downes, 22, recently returned to the team after a knee injury.

Asked how much Dozzell has impressed him this season, Lambert said: “I think for himself rather than anything else, he’s been great. I think he’s getting better and better.

“I think he’s getting the ugly side of the game into his body, I think that was lacking in his game, where he needed that little streak of nastiness in him to be a top, top midfielder. In his last few games, he’s certainly got that.

“Would I have played him in as many games if Cole [Skuse] was fit? I’m not so sure, just to give him a little break at certain times, but over the piece I think he’s been fantastic for us.”

Lambert is delighted Downes is back, his injury having come soon after he had asked to be left out as his head wasn’t in the right place due to interest from Premier League Crystal Palace.

“He had his downs at the start of the season with the Crystal Palace thing, then he got his injury in his knee,” Lambert continued.

“One thing you get with Flynn is incredible endeavour, incredible honesty. Everything as a manager you want to see in a footballer, he’s got it. He’s got everything there for him to go on and do really well.

“And hopefully he keeps sustaining what he’s doing because he’s a really good player and he’s got a great thing, enthusiasm, which you can never give to anybody, he’s got that in abundance.”

Could they be a driving force in the Blues’ midfield for the next few years? “I hope so because you’ve got really good players there. You’ve got great endeavour and enthusiasm.

“Two different types of players which will complement each other and two very, very good young footballers, very good.
He added: “They’ve done it with England [youth sides] over time as well, they’ve played really well together and I think the two of them are really good players.

“If we can keep Teddy Bishop fit as well, he’s had little problems since he’s come back, we need to just watch him, but if he can get back to the level he was before he got injured, we’ve got three really good young ones there that can be there for many seasons.”

Photos: Matchday Images

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dugoutdave added 11:34 - Jan 29
"Dozzell and Downes could be driving force" hopefully they will be driving Lamberts removals van out of Ipswich

Juggsy added 11:35 - Jan 29
In reality, any decent offer comes in and they are gone.

itfcjoe added 11:39 - Jan 29
They won't be if you stay here as will want to play in the top 2 tiers ASAP

Len_Brennan added 11:45 - Jan 29
In the right team, with the right tactics, formation, & coaching, sure.

Nobbysnuts added 11:49 - Jan 29
With a decent manager they could well be but not with that fraud lambert....get out of our club...

Linkboy13 added 11:57 - Jan 29
Downes is a very good player but i don't see Dozzell as much of a driving force.

arc added 13:01 - Jan 29
1) Play Downes as the deeper-lying midfielder, and free Dozzell to push forward more. Those are their more natural positions, not the other way round.

2) Please train Dozzell out of his habit of grabbing his head in horror every time he is whistled for a foul—it's doing him no favours with refs.

Thanks. (Who am I talking to?... ;-) )

DifferentGravy added 13:04 - Jan 29
Well said Arc

Dozzell is NOT a defensive midfielder. If his best attribute is passing then he needs to be further forward and have people to aim for........not just one forward against 4 defenders


Skip73 added 13:37 - Jan 29
Dozzell is average at best. Sorry if this upsets anyone but I cannot remember him having many great games. If his Dad wasn't who he is more people would agree.

BlueBadger added 13:45 - Jan 29
Neither of them will be playing for us next season, thanks to Lambert keeping us in the third division.

NITFC added 14:02 - Jan 29
I actually think that, in a good side, Andre would shine because other players would be on the same wavelength. I remember the genius that was Arnold Muhren who played a very similar game (and had excellent players around him)

We need to play Andre in a more attacking role though because he's the one that can pick a pass - something that our strikers have not had all season.


therein61 added 16:03 - Jan 29
The only driving force in this club at present is you and your inept coaches driving negativity into the players

Suffolkboy added 16:43 - Jan 29
Many argue we are not making the most of our options ,nor managing our football assets judiciously and certainly good ‘man management ‘ can and will release confidence and talent otherwise restrained — in these aspects ITFC have a little way to go !
The potential is there ; we’d do well as supporters to concentrate occasionally on the realities of unexploited energy and latent enthusiasm AND perhaps ask of PL and his team just how they see themselves being able to develop integrated strategy and policy to excite both the playing staff ,and the supporters .

Linkboy13 added 18:30 - Jan 29
Yes Skip 73 As somebody said on hear the other day a little boy lost in a mans world. Being a local lad he's going to have people who think he's Arnold Muhren don't know what sort of world they're living in.

Skip73 added 00:09 - Jan 30
He was called a youngster during the Sunderland game as if he's 18. He's 21, not really a youngster in football terms.

runningout added 00:31 - Jan 30
our midfield is still a bit lightweight. Maybe in time a few of them will be more robust. We could do with a no nonsense midfielder that knows a good pass and can cope with expectations of a professional

BlueInBerks added 14:06 - Jan 30
Runningout, we thought we had that in Huws, but V1 from a couple of seasons ago is AWOL

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