Express & Star

Ipswich v Wolves preview: Tractor boys set to throw a teen loanee into fray

Ipswich boss Kieran McKenna says loanee Omari Hutchinson has made ‘massive strides’ as he looks set for a start against Wolves tonight.

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The 19-year-old, on loan from Chelsea, has settled in well at Portman Road with a winner against Southampton last Tuesday, before an impressive display off the bench in the win over Blackburn at the weekend.

He is expected to be recalled to the starting XI for tonight’s Carabao Cup action, as a reward for his start at Ipswich.

“He’s improving week by week,” McKenna said. “He’s made massive strides over the last couple of months and made the start that every young player going on their first loan should try and do.

“He’s adapted to the culture of the group and the values of the group. He’s bought into everything that the group’s about, but at the same time he’s bringing his own quality and his own personality to the group and to the team now.

“He’s showing that he’s a fast learner, he’s adapting well and he’s a really good player to have around. We’re all excited to have him here.

“He’s developing well as a player but most importantly, he’s developing as a man now really and learning off the good professionals that he’s in the dressing room with.

“I think it’s a credit to him and his attitude and his upbringing, and it’s a credit to the group that he’s in because for young players, and often for many players when they go into a new group, they adapt to the culture that they go into and we feel that he’s going into a really strong one.

“I said it to him and the group when he arrived, we’re very happy to have him here and lucky to have him here and he’s happy and lucky to be with this group because he brings something to us and the group of players down there are giving a lot to him as well. I think it’s a really good mix for both parties at the moment..”

Leif Davis suffered a knock to his ankle late on in the Blackburn game, however, McKenna was already planning a couple changes to give some members of his squad playing time.

He added: “Of course, we’ve not got a league game now for a week, so we’ll look at the balance and make good decisions for Tuesday night to benefit the squad.”