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Kings of Anglia Issue 10 Magazine Offer

Ipswich boss Lambert has taken 29 players on Town's German tour... but eight young pros have been left behind

PUBLISHED: 17:00 11 July 2019

Neither Barry Cotter or Aaron Drinan have been on Town's pre-season tour of Germany. Picture: ROSS HALLS

Neither Barry Cotter or Aaron Drinan have been on Town's pre-season tour of Germany. Picture: ROSS HALLS

Archant

Andy Warren takes a look at the eight young players who have not traveled with Ipswich for pre-season.

Barry Cotter, Ben Morris, Aaron Drinan and Brett McGavin watch on during Town's U18s first pre-season friendly game at Playford Road Picture: ROSS HALLSBarry Cotter, Ben Morris, Aaron Drinan and Brett McGavin watch on during Town's U18s first pre-season friendly game at Playford Road Picture: ROSS HALLS

Aaron Drinan

It's clear the former Waterford man has significant work to do if he is to force his way into Paul Lambert's first-team picture.

The youngster, who has yet to make his senior debut despite being talked up following his arrival 18 months ago, recently returned from a loan spell back with Waterford having also featured for his country's Under 21 side.

He has resumed training with the Blues' Under 23s and has not travelled to Germany with the first-team squad.

Lambert currently has just James Norwood and Kayden Jackson as specialist strikers, with the decision not to take Drinan on tour a sure sign of where he stands.

Barry Cotter has not been on tour with the Ipswich Town senior side. Picture: ROSS HALLSBarry Cotter has not been on tour with the Ipswich Town senior side. Picture: ROSS HALLS

Barry Cotter

The young right-back is another who has not been taken on tour this summer and, given the fact his position is up for grabs, it's clear he is a long way from Lambert's thinking right now.

His one and only Ipswich Town start to date saw his withdrawal against Barnsley booed by the Portman Road crowd, with questions over that decision leading to Mick McCarthy walking out of the club in April 2018.

He's struggled to make any kind of impression on the senior set-up since and came close to joining Swindon permanently in January, before his season in the Under 23s ended in a red card for dissent at the end of the last campaign.

That incident highlights areas that Cotter must improve if he is to make the grade at Portman Road, despite clearly possessing ability.

Ben Folami and Ben Morris are recovering from injuries. Picture: ROSS HALLSBen Folami and Ben Morris are recovering from injuries. Picture: ROSS HALLS

Ben Morris

The young England international would have surely been in the first-team picture during the final weeks of last season had it not been for the cruciate knee ligament injury he suffered in training in February.

He showed promise in his only senior appearance last season, making an impact in the opening-day draw with Blackburn, before a frustrating loan at Forest Green.

His injury is likely to keep him out until the turn of the year, at which point he will return to action with the Under 23s in a bid to impress Paul Lambert.

Ben Folami

Australian youth international Folami was in the first team picture during the final weeks of Mick McCarthy's reign but drifted out of the picture following the appointment of Paul Hurst.

He can play through the middle or as a wide forward, but is out of action until Christmas at least after rupturing his Achilles at the start of the year.

Like Morris he will need to prove his worth with Gerard Nash's Under 23s.

Brett McGavin on the ball for Town U23s in their 2-0 win over Burnley Picture: ROSS HALLSBrett McGavin on the ball for Town U23s in their 2-0 win over Burnley Picture: ROSS HALLS

Brett McGavin

One of an army of young Ipswich players given pro deals during last season.

The calm and collected midfielder is in the mould of Cole Skuse, breaking up play and quietly bringing others into the game.

Given the wealth of midfield talent available to Lambert, it's no surprise the youngster didn't make the cut for the German tour and is set for another year of age group football.

Ipswich Town defender Pat Webber had his contract extended for a further season. Picture: ROSS HALLSIpswich Town defender Pat Webber had his contract extended for a further season. Picture: ROSS HALLS

Pat Webber

The Blues took up the option in the defender's contract at the end of last season.

The 20-year-old was a member of the young Ipswich Town side which pushed Crystal Palace all the way in the League Cup in August 2017 but has not featured since, spending time on loan at Braintree in the meantime.

He can play at left-back or at centre-back and performed well in the Under 23s towards the end of last season, doing well enough to earn an extended stay.

Kai Brown on the ball during Town U23s 4-1 win over Colchester Picture: ROSS HALLSKai Brown on the ball during Town U23s 4-1 win over Colchester Picture: ROSS HALLS

Kai Brown

Brown arrived at Ipswich as a midfielder in January 2018 but has played his football at Portman Road as a forward.

Much of his time in the Under 23s has seen him deployed wide on the right flank, cutting inside to support the central striker.

He was on the bench for the final game of last season but has yet to make a professional debut, with many obstacles between him and the first team as things stand.

He looks set to be a mainstay of the Under 23s again this season.

Zak Brown has signed a professional deal with Ipswich Town. Picture: ITFCZak Brown has signed a professional deal with Ipswich Town. Picture: ITFC

Zak Brown

No relation to Kai, Ipswich Town's newest professional put pen to paper on his senior contract last month.

Striker Brown played the majority of his football with the Under 18s last season while also turning out for the Under 23s on a handful of occasions. He figures to do so again during the coming year.

He is the younger brother of Charlie Brown, who left the Ipswich Town academy for Chelsea in 2016 and impressed in the UEFA Youth League for the Londoners last season.

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