Ipswich Town running the rule over Needham’s Ace in the pack

INJURY ABSENCE: Former Ipswich Town player Ian Westlake is set to miss Needham's trip to Aveley tomorrow with a badly swollen ankle sustained in the thrilling 4-2 home victory over Maldon and Tiptree on Tuesday, which left the Marketmen just a point off top spot in Ryman League Division One North
INJURY ABSENCE: Former Ipswich Town player Ian Westlake is set to miss Needham's trip to Aveley tomorrow with a badly swollen ankle sustained in the thrilling 4-2 home victory over Maldon and Tiptree on Tuesday, which left the Marketmen just a point off top spot in Ryman League Division One North
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Needham Market’s teenage talent Ace Howell has been given a glowing endorsement ahead of his trial at Ipswich Town being extended.

The 17-year-old winger or forward, who has had Needham fans on the edge of their seats since breaking into the first-team this season, was unavailable for Tuesday’s 4-2 league home win over Maldon and Tiptree due to training with the Sky Bet Championship club.

But manager Morsley revealed he has not played his last game for the Marketmen, as he is available for tomorrow’s trip to mid-table Aveley (3pm), before returning to the Tractor Boys for a full week.

Norwich City and Colchester United have also shown an interest in the younger brother of Lamell, but the Tractor Boys are in pole position to land a player Morsley thinks has the tools to step up into the professional game.

“He is a real talent in terms of his pace and his ability on the ball and I think he has a real chance.

“If Ipswich see that, we will be talking about a move.”

He said first-team coach Steve Foley’s links with Town had helped secure a trial, but their scouts were already well aware of him.

“They are always watching the under-18s,” he said.

“Steve has worked with him and said he was good but there has been a bit of interest from one or two other clubs, Norwich and Colchester, as well.”

Morsley said he was bitterly disappointed to go out of the FA Trophy on Saturday, having been looking forward to testing his side at Maidstone United in the next round.

But now his side have just the league to concentrate on, after going out of all four cup competitions in consecutive games before Tuesday’s welcome win, he knows they must now make the lack of fixture congestion, compared to their promotion rivals, work in their favour.

“We should have won the game on Saturday easily but on Tuesday we were far more focused and switched on against Maldon in difficult conditions and I thought we played some really good football.”

An eventful first-half at Bloomfields saw Tunde Adewumni pull a goal back after Kieran Morphew and Ollie Fenn had put the hosts 2-0 up inside 25 minutes, before Adewumni equalised.

But Morphew struck again within a minute for a 3-2 lead at half-time with Luke Ingram’s 81st-minute strike finally putting the result beyond doubt.

It left Needham just a point off leaders Harlow with a game in hand, but a trip to a physical Aveley side and their testing pitch will be far from easy.

Ian Westlake (ankle) is set to miss out, while Danny Cunningham should recover from a similar injury in time.

n Needham Market Reserves crashed out of the Red Insure Thurlow Nunn League Cup after suffering an 8-1 defeat at Walsham-le-Willows in the first round on Wednesday.