Ipswich Town

Ipswich Town: Flynn Downes could be fit enough to face Southend after recent hip injury

Ipswich Town: Flynn Downes could be fit enough to face Southend after recent hip injury

Ipswich midfielder Flynn Downes could return to action for the Tractor Boys this weekend as they travel to take on Southend on Saturday.

East Anglian Daily Times reported that manager Paul Lambert is waiting to make a call on the fitness of the 20-year-old, who trained on Thursday after missing the last two matches with a hip injury.

Lambert told East Anglian Daily Times: “He seems alright. He trained yesterday. If there any problems I’m pretty sure I’ll find out shortly.

“Flynn coming back gives me a problem – do I put him back in or do I wait? – but he was playing really, really well.”

Downes incurred his hip injury while on international duty with the England under-21 side earlier this month, which forced him to miss Ipswich’s defeats to Accrington Stanley and Rotherham in recent days, as noted by East Anglian Daily Times.

The midfielder, who had started every League One game before this week, has a goal and an assist to his name so far in 2019/20, with match averages of 1.3 successful aerial duels, 2.5 successful tackles, 1.6 interceptions, 38.7 passes, 0.8 key passes and 1.4 dribbles, with a passing success rate of 80%, as per WhoScored.

Andre Dozzell, who came into the team against Accrington instead of Downes, was substituted at half-time at the Crown Ground after winning one tackle, recording no dribbles or aerial duels, and misplacing five of his 25 passes. Midfield partner Cole Skuse did not win a tackle at all that day. [via WhoScored]

Skuse at least managed one successful tackle from a more withdrawn position in the defeat to Rotherham, but had a modest 78% passing success rate. Emyr Huws, who played in a central midfield position in a 4-1-3-2 setup, didn’t win a tackle and recorded only 16 successful passes out of 22 (72.7% accuracy). [via WhoScored]

Ipswich have gone from conceding just five goals in 11 league matches with Downes in the team (losing none) to letting in four in the two matches that he missed (losing both). [via TransferMarkt]

It doesn’t seem coincidental that, without his ball-winning ability in the centre of midfield, Lambert’s team have looked far more vulnerable, as the sudden spike in their goal concession rate and dip in results would indicate. If Downes is in any way fit to feature against Southend, he ought to be restored to the line-up.

Ipswich fans, would you start Downes against Southend if he is fit enough to feature, or would that present a danger of him being rushed back from injury? Join in the discussion by commenting below!

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