IPSWICH Town manager Paul Lambert will pitch some of his talented youngsters into battle when the Blues head down the A12 to Colchester United tonight.

The East Anglian foes are set to meet in a Leasing.com Trophy clash at the JobServe Community Stadium (kick-off 7.30pm).

Former Colchester boss Lambert changed all ten outfield players for Saturday’s FA Cup first-round draw against Lincoln City, with keeper Will Norris the only survivor from last week's 1-0 League One win at Rochdale.

And with his side already through to the last 32, it promises to be a young and much-changed side against the U's.

When asked about the strength of his team, Lambert said: "I don’t know.

"We’ve already qualified so I can pick what team I want.

“Whatever team I play, we’ll go there and try to win.

“We’ve got to watch the lads (first-team regulars), who are never going to play 60 games.

"You’d be off your head if you think they can play that.

"We need to see the younger guys to see if they can play in front of a crowd so it’s good for the club.

"It’s great for the supporters to see one or two young ones getting thrown in.”

Lambert has been openly critical of the much-maligned competition this season.

However, one positive is that it's given youngsters like Armando Dobra and Idris El Mizouni a chance to prove their worth, in addition to handing valuable minutes to players coming back from injury, like Emyr Huws.

“I’ve seen enough of them to know what these guys can do," said Lambert.

“It’s about going into the first-team environment, where they’re training with us and can handle training with us in the first place, rather than just throwing them into a game where it’s tough.

“So when they come up and train with me I know exactly what the guys can do and I know if they can handle it."

Southern Group A leaders Ipswich have six points from their two games, having defeated Tottenham Hotspur's under-21s and Gillingham.

They are already through but have an added incentive to win the group as they would then be guaranteed a home match in the last 32.

Colchester are second with four points, after winning 3-2 at Gillingham and drawing 1-1 with Spurs' under-21s.

The Londoners have two points so could still finish as runners-up.