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RESERVE REPORTS

Posted on 18 June 2007  - 12:00

Clive Allen offers his assessment on the individual progress made by those in his Reserve Team group over the course of season 2006-07...

Clive Allen offers his assessment on the individual progress made by those in his Reserve Team group over the course of season 2006-07...Ben Alnwick (6 appearances)
Ben was obviously an arrival half way through the season and came with a big reputation in a deal that saw Marton Fulop go the other way. I thought he settled very quickly, which was to his credit and, as he hadn't done a lot of work for a number of months before he joined us due to injury, the conditioning work he carried out very well. It wasn't until the last couple of months of the season that we saw the best of him or saw what he is capable of, so it will be a big pre-season for him in terms of being in good shape to put pressure on Radek Cerny and Paul Robinson. We regard him as a really talented goalkeeper, but he now has to step up and start to force himself into the reckoning for the first team squad.

Troy Archibald-Henville (6 appearances / 2 sub)
I think he finished the season very strongly, which was really good to see. He'd had a period out through injury in the season that was frustrating for him, but once he overcame it his attitude and work was fantastic. He merited his chance and took it very well. His performances were of a high standard for one of very little experience at this level. He stepped up well and he is another one who we will be looking to to push on next season and establish himself in the reserve team. He showed he is capable in a number of positions, he played well with Leigh Mills at the centre of a young back four and then was asked to play at right back. He proved himself as being versatile which is very good for him.

Andy Barcham (16 appearances, 2 goals)
Barch, in a way, played on his own in his role up front purely because of the injuries Lee Barnard, Simon Dawkins and Tomas Pekhart suffered. A lot was asked of him, it was a difficult role for him, but he worked tirelessly and put a lot into the games. Perhaps, if there was a disappointment, it was his goal return. In saying that, he looked very much at home when Barney returned and I think we saw Barch at his best when he had a striking partner alongside him. It was not easy, but he worked very, very hard over the season.

Lee Barnard (3 appearances / 1 sub, 2 goals)
He was missed, no doubt about it. The injury he had was a big blow for him and for the team because, it doesn't matter who you are, if you take out the 20 goals he is capable of contributing it is always going to be hard to replace. He led the line well last year before having a torrid time this year. When he did come back he showed what we have missed and what he is all about. Lee has showed a great attitude and desire in the work he had to do to get himself fit again and he is one who will be looking forward to pre-season and getting off to a good start.

Robert Burch (3 appearances)
With Burchy we knew the severity of the broken leg he suffered at the end of last season in the play-off final and he has shown great character and been very strong minded in terms of the way he has gone about getting himself fit and getting back playing. He worked very hard and it has been good to see him back out on the pitch. I am sure he will re-establish himself as one of the top young goalkeepers in the country when he finds a new club. I saw him while he was out on loan at Barnet and he is more than capable at that level and probably higher up.


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