Ipswich Town fan Zach Ward says: ‘Renewed sense of optimism at Portman Road after encouraging start’

Ipswich Town fan Zach Ward
Ipswich Town fan Zach Ward
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When one door closes, another one opens, as the saying goes.

Football can be the cruellest of games. Andre Dozzell, since making a goal scoring debut as a 16-year-old at the tail end of the 2015/16 season, was given a home start against Birmingham on Saturday.

There certainly seems to be an approach to play a little more football than we have done under McCarthy

He has patiently bided his time for an opportunity and was buoyed no doubt after a successful summer campaign with the England Under-19s.

Within 40 minutes, his season was over. Torn cruciate knee ligaments means he faces nine months on the sidelines.

Get well soon, Andre.

He was replaced with 18-year-old Flynn Downes in central midfield. The Ipswich Town academy may have unearthed another gem.

He showed composure beyond his years; he was comfortable in possession, always looked to feet, and put himself about. He played like a seasoned pro, rather than a teen playing his first minutes as a professional.

It was a thoroughly impressive debut.

In fact, it’s been a thoroughly encouraging start for Mick McCarthy’s men.

A win against Brum, where we played some nice stuff at times, a debut goal for new man Joe Garner, we are into the second round of the cup after a 2-0 win away at Luton, and two clean sheets in the process.

It is incredibly early days. But there is a sense of renewed optimism and belief around the club at the moment. There certainly seems to be an approach to play a little more football than we have done under McCarthy.

From first impressions, we have made some smart signings, too – the big and powerful Dominic Iorfa, in particular, has taken to our 3-5-2 system like a duck to water at right wing back.

So far, so good.