Partly Cloudy

Partly Cloudy

max temp: 18°C

min temp: 13°C

Search

Wales Under-21 boss Geraint Williams keeping a close eye on Elliott Hewitt’s progress at Ipswich Town

PUBLISHED: 12:00 11 December 2012

Elliott Hewitt

Elliott Hewitt

Archant

THERE was one man in Ipswich particularly pleased to see Elliott Hewitt make his Blues debut at the weekend.

Wales Under-21 boss Geraint Williams still has a house in the town and has been keeping close tabs on the progress of the Rhyl-born 18-year-old after he made the move to Portman Road in the summer.

A host of Premier League clubs – including the likes of Arsenal and Chelsea – were tracking the athletic young right-back last season following his rise to prominence in a Macclesfield Town side that were ultimately relegated from League Two.

The need for double hip surgery meant top-level interest dropped off though and former Town boss Paul Jewell was able to get him for just £150,000.

And following a lengthy rehabilitation period, the teenager – who made his Football League debut at the age of 16 and was soon fast-tracked to the Wales Under-21 squad – came off the bench in the 88th minute of Saturday’s 3-0 home win over Millwall.

“He’s a player that is very much on my radar,” said Williams. “I’ve watched the DVDs of his games with our Under-21s when Bryan Flynn was in charge and I was impressed. We’ve had him playing well above his age group for some time because we wanted to test the natural athleticism that he has.

“I was at Playford Road to watch his first game back after his operation, against Swansea’s Under-21s, alongside Mick McCarthy. I think it’s fair to say we were both pleased with what we saw, especially as he had been out for so long.”

He continued: “I’ve spoken to Elliott at the training ground a couple of times now and I’ve been impressed by his attitude. He’s so enthusiastic about the game and just loves playing.

“He’s a young man and it’s important we don’t heap too much expectation on him, but he’s got an awful lot of attributes. He’s really looking forward to proving himself to myself and Mick – and we’re both hopeful he can do that.”

Former Macclesfield boss Gary Simpson said: “We took Elliott on after he was released by Wrexham and could see very quickly that he was a bright prospect. We gave him his debut at 16, but, to be honest, I wanted to play him before that.

“He was tremendous for us during a difficult period and there were a number of Premier League clubs looking to spend some serious money on him before the hip problems.

“In my opinion, Ipswich have got themselves a real bargain. He’s a really grounded, level-headed lad with all the attributes to make it to the very top.”

Comments have been disabled on this article.

The second tier season starts next Friday, however, clubs are working frantically to add to their squads, ahead of a long campaign. Several deals HAVE already been done though and CHRIS BRAMMER picks out six of the best.

Nearly 60 per cent of Ipswich Town fans would like to see Luke Chambers start in the heart of the Blues defence, alongside Adam Webster, when the Championship season begins next Saturday.

Ipswich Town manager Mick McCarthy says he is prepared to play a waiting game to sign the right striker before the transfer window shuts.

Ipswich Town boss Mick McCarthy won’t sacrifice results to satisfy supporters’ thirst for more attractive football at Portman Road this season.

Colchester United manager John McGreal insists his players still have a lot of room for improvement, ahead of the U’s League Two opener at Accrington Stanley, next Saturday.

Ipswich Town beat Colchester United 1-0 in a pre-season game at the Weston Homes Community Stadium last night. Stuart Watson gives his thoughts.

Summer signing Joe Garner scored his sixth goal of pre-season as Ipswich Town defeated Colchester United, 1-0, in a friendly at the Weston Homes Community Stadium on Tuesday evening.

Mick McCarthy has named a team mixed with youth and experience for tonight’s pre-season friendly at Colchester United.

Ipswich Town head to local rivals Colchester United tonight, as the Blues’ preparations for the new Championship season step up a notch.

The best young female footballers in the region will be coming to Ipswich Town as the club saw off strong competition from other teams to partner the Football Association and host the FA Women’s U21 East Region Academy.

Most read

Show Job Lists

Topic pages

Newsletter Sign Up

Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter
MyDate24 MyPhotos24