Colchester United have won 3-1 at Leyton Orient
Two goals from Theo Robinson, and one from Harry Pell sealed the win for the U’s on Boxing Day, with the Leyton Orient goal coming from Ruel Sotiriou.
Dean Gerken was back in the side, coming in for Ethan Ross, along with Omar Sowunmi who took the place of injured Luke Prosser.
Colchester started the game at some pace, quickly making chances for themselves. Callum Harriott has a shot saved in the second minute when Sargeant pushed his effort away from a tight angle after the Colchester winger combined with front man Theo Robinson.
Leyton Orient took their time to get into the game, but when they did Colchester had to defend well to keep the scores level.
James Dayton missed a great chance to put his side ahead, as he couldn’t find the target from ten yards out. The ball was at an awkward height for him though and his effort trickled out of play for a goal kick.
Lee Angol was next to try his luck. From the apex of the area he blasted a shot towards goal, but it was high and wide over Dean Gerken’s bar.
Harry Pell was just inches away from putting the U’s in front on thirty minutes. His goal bound effort from a corner had beaten Sargeant in goal but was blocked on the line and cleared out of danger by the home side.
Kwame Poku was looking a handful down the right wing, getting the better of Dan Happe on many occasions. He put two notably dangerous, almost identical crosses into the area, flashing the ball across the face of goal but no one was there to tap in for the U’s.
In the forty first minute, the U’s got it right. Jackson burst down the right with a great run and cross to find Theo Robinson. The front man for Colchester simply diverted the ball into the empty net to give the almost 800 U’s fans something to cheer about as the away side led at the break.
Poku again looked dangerous as the Colchester tried to keep the momentum of the first half going. Five minutes into the second period, he struck the outside of the post from a tight angle.
Luke Gambin then had a brilliant opportunity to double the lead for the U’s. Bramall used his pace to beat George Marsh down the left flank before finding Harriott on the edge of the area. His shot was deflected straight to Gambin, but he couldn’t beat Sargeant from ten yards out.
It was Harry Pell who did double the Colchester lead ten minutes later. Again, Bramall was bursting down the left wing, and found Harriott. His shot this time was saved by Sargeant, who pushed the ball directly into the path of Pell who had continued his run. The U’s captain side footed into the empty net and sprinted to the travelling fans to celebrate.
Orient tried their luck to get back into the game, with Harrold missing a couple of golden chances to get the home side back into the game.
First, he was unmarked at the back post but could only find the side netting. He then blazed an effort just over the bar from eight yards out as Sowunmi applied the pressure.
Maguire-Drew also had a good chance to get his side a goal. Gerken came to punch but could only find the Orient man on the edge of the area but he couldn’t keep his shot down and fired into the despairing O’s fans behind the goal.
Three minutes from time Leyton Orient did score, and it was through Ruel Sotiriou on his Football League debut. Dean Gerken initially saved well from Maguire-Drew as he drilled a shot towards the U’s goal, but it was almost a carbon copy of Harry Pell’s goal, with Sotiriou following up and tapping in.
Orient threw men forward to try and get an equaliser, but it had the opposite effect as Colchester regained the two-goal lead in the ninetieth minute.
Courtney Senior was introduced and with tired legs in the home defence, he was difficult to stop. Beating Happe on the right-hand side he played in Robinson who stroked the ball into the far corner from fifteen to get his second and the U’s third.
The 1-3 result means that Colchester are now unbeaten in eight games in the league, setting up the next game brilliantly. The U’s will host second placed Exeter City on Sunday afternoon at the JobServe Community Stadium.
Playing at 1pm, the result in East London lifted Colchester United momentarily up to fourth position in Sky Bet League Two, just one point behind Crewe who occupy the last automatic spot.