'I've loved it so far... I want to keep pushing' - Dobra hungry for more after Ipswich Town breakthrough
PUBLISHED: 17:00 06 September 2019
Armando Dobra is hungry for more after getting a taste for first-team football at Ipswich Town.
The 18-year-old midfielder burst onto the scene this summer, securing a place on the Blues' pre-season trip to Germany and impressing sufficiently to earn a senior debut in the 3-1 loss at Luton in the Carabao Cup.
He scored Town's consolation in that game and backed that up with a man-of-the-match display as he assisted both of Jordan Roberts' goals in Tuesday's EFL Trophy victory over Tottenham's Under 21s.
The chance to spend 10 days in Germany with the first-team squad has had a big impact on Dobra, with the teenager now hoping to remain in manager Paul Lambert's plans for the rest of the campaign.
"This summer has been really good for me," he said.
"I really enjoyed going away with the senior squad to Germany and it was a great experience. I'm also grateful to the manager for giving me a chance to prove myself and show what I can do. I think things have gone well so far.
"I was in the same boat as Bailey (Clements) the day before the Germany trip. I got called into Stuart's (Taylor, assistant manager) and he said 'you'll be on the plane to Germany'.
"I was shocked but obviously it was a great feeling and I was buzzing inside.
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"Playing against the opposition we did out there was definitely beneficial. We went up against some good teams and it was a good experience for everyone but certainly the younger lads like me.
"I was involved in some of the pre-season games back in the UK as well and that shows what the manager is like. I appreciate the trust he has shown in me because not many managers would put their trust in younger players.
"My aim for the season is just to keep pushing and working with the first-team and play as many games as I can because I've loved it so far."
Reflecting on his goal at Luton, for which the Albania Under 19 drove inside before firing home from the edge of the box, Dobra said: "It's obviously a shame that I scored when we were three goals down.
"But inside it was a good feeling. It's a nice thing to score on your debut and I think that came from the gaffer telling me to express myself. I was fairly happy with how I played but a goal topped it off on a personal side.
"It's been fun making the journey with Bailey (Clements) and Idris (El Mizouni). They're in a similar situation and we can help each other."
Dobra joined the Blues at Under 15 level from the Finesse Football Academy in Ilford, Essex and is contracted to the club until this summer.
Ipswich have the option to extend that for a further season.