Match Report

 

Fri 23 Aug 13

The U's came  close to grabbing all three points on Friday night as they ended up sharing the spoils with Carlisle United to extend their unbeaten run. 

Trailing to an early goal, it was all Colchester after the interval in a much improved display in the second forty-five minutes, where they penned in the visitors. 

They got a fine equaliser through Freddie Sears, but couldn't quite find that all important second. 

But the nature of that second half performance offers great encouragement to the U's as they look to establish themselves in the top half of the table. 

Joe will be pleased with how it's all coming together and they'll look to go one better against Orient next week. 

The visitors started the game brightly, winning two corners – the first after Amoo’s cross was nodded behind and the second when they had a shot deflected just wide.

They got the goal their efforts merited as Robson struck a shot from distance after four minutes, the ball driving into the bottom corner beyond the despairing dive of Walker.

They almost got a second when Miller got up well at a corner but he should have done better with his headed effort at the far post.

Gillespie was keeping the visitors ahead, first denying Wilson and then pulling off a superb stop from Ibehre on the edge of the box after fine work by Watt.

Amoo was the Cumbrian’s main outlet, though, driving at Olufemi to give the young defender a real test on his full debut.

The U’s came close to drawing level through the young deputy left back. He had denied dangerman Amoo at one end and then got forward onto the end of a Watt ball to cannon a shot off the crossbar with Gillespie beaten.

Chances then became relatively limited until Ibehre’s low shot forced a good save out of Gillespie who turned it behind for a corner.

The U’s were being patient though and one long move with Eastmond at the heart of it ended with Olufemi hitting one straight at Gillespie.

A free kick for the U’s saw them have three or four blocked shots as the ball pinballed around the area, and a corner saw Ibehre nod wide.

Eastman then drove one over from distance, but the U’s trailed at the break.

They were almost level within five minutes of the restart as Watt exploded from midfield to glide past two or three, driving a shot on the turn just wide of the upright.

Miller had a shot from a narrow angle well saved by Walker, as the visitors relied on the counter attack against a stronger U’s threat.

Eastmond and Massey both had efforts on goal, before Noble had an effort disallowed for offside – he was comfortably beyond the U’s line when he tucked it in.

Sears was the next to go close, forcing Gillespie to help it over the bar with a shot from distance that stung the keeper’s fingertips.

Gilbey was introduced for Wright for the last 25 minutes as the U’s added even further drive into the midfield.

The U’s got the goal their efforts deserved with twenty minutes remaining. Watt swung a cross to the far post that Massey did brilliantly well to bring down.

He spotted Sears just inside the box and set up his strike partner to lash home a sensational effort high into the net.

The remainder of the half was all Col U, a series of corners pinning in Carlisle. Gillespie pulled off a brilliant save to deny Gilbey with a close range header, but the U’s kept on pressing. 

But although the final moments of the game were encamped around the Carlisle goal, it remained 1-1. 

There is much to be optimistic about - and the fans' superb support in the second half is part of that.

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