There was no return to winning ways for the U's on Saturday afternoon, as they fell to a 2-0 defeat against Oldham Athletic.
After a weekend without a game, the U's were looking to hit the ground running as they prepared for a busy festive period.
But a goal in each half was enough for the Latics, as the U's continue to look for a victory to get them moving the right way up the league table.
The U’s had started brightly, however, and almost took the lead early on as a cross from the right hand side by Henderson found Ibehre in the middle, but he put his header just wide.
The U’s were well on the front foot, but had to be wary of the threat of the Latics’ front line, with Baxter curling one comfortably wide of the upright to give the home side something to think about.
That chance gave the visitors a bit more encouragement, as they tested the U’s back line, but the home side stood strong in that first twenty minutes.
The U’s first real chance came on twenty minutes as Bond won the ball in midfield and set Wordsworth away, and his swerving shot – which moved around a lot in the air – was well held by Cisak.
Magnus Okuonghae was the first to go into the book for a foul thirty yards from goal, but Baxter’s free kick was deflected behind for a corner.
The Latics were winning the midfield battle in that middle part of the first half, and they came closest yet to a first goal on 28 minutes as the ball was laid square to the onrushing left back Grounds, who forced a good low stop out of Cousins.
Having booked Brown for the visitors, the ref made it three yellows as he put Bean into the book when it looked like he’d got to the ball.
Shortly afterwards, the U’s were behind. The ball was swung in from the left from a corner and M’Voto headed home a towering effort that cannoned in off the underside of the bar.
The U’s could have found themselves two down five minutes later as Montano made the most of a Wilson slip to fire across a low ball.
His effort made its way to Wesolowski, who sidefooted wide when well placed and should probably have found the net.
The Latics were keen to get that second before the break and it took some fantastic defending by Okuonghae to throw himself in front of the ball and deflect Baxter’s fierce effort over the bar.
The U’s went in just one goal behind at the break and boss Joe Dunne reshaped his side to go 4-4-2 in the second half in an attempt to get back into it.
But it was Athletic who had the first two chances of the second half – first Derbyshire’s near post effort was intercepted by Cousins, before Montano put a shot just wide of goal.
That woke the U’s up and a spell of home pressure ended with them nearly drawing level. They worked the ball to Bond 25 yards out and his long range shot clipped a man to beat Cisak, but not the post.
Cisak then tipped the ball over the bar as Potts got to the byline and saw his deflected cross almost creep in. However, the referee gave a goalkick, much to the U’s frustration.
Henderson forced a save out of Cisak at his near post, before a good stop from Cousins turned Montano’s effort behind.
The U’s made their first change as Drey Wright was introduced in place of Bean.
But they found themselves two behind in what turned out to be a bizarre own goal. Derbyshire’s shot was well saved by Cousins, but it fell behind Wilson who couldn’t see where the ball had gone.
As he turned to clear, the ball rolled towards the empty net, although Derbyshire may have slid it home.
The U’s knew they had 25 minutes to rescue something out of the game, and Wordsworth’s stinging shot was eventually held by Cisak.
Cousins. Meanwhile, was pulling off some important stops – from Derbyshire and Montano, to keep the U’s in the match.
The U’s introduced Gilbey for Bond with twenty minutes remaining, whilst Sears drilled in a low shot that Cisak turned away from danger.
The home side were seeking a goal to get them back into the game, but in turn were having to be wary of being caught out short handed at the back.
The U’s had a golden chance to fight their way back into the game as a cross from the right was met well by Ibehre, but he headed straight into the arms of Cisak.
Wright and Gilbey had made a big difference after their introduction and they combined with a great move down the right.
The midfielder set the winger free and his low cross was just beyond the outstretched boot of Ibehre in the middle.
The U’s prompted and probed but could not find their way to goal, and it was another reverse for Joe Dunne’s men as he looks for the formula to get his team going again.