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Match Reports

Match Report : 20/10/2015

20 October 2015

The U’s impressively ended a run of three straight defeats on Tuesday night, thanks to Marvin Sordell’s second half strike.

Port Vale kicked off on a chilly night at the Weston Homes Community Stadium, and the first chance also fell their way on three minutes when Colin Daniel’s low strike was saved by Jamie Jones who lunged to his right to tip the ball wide.

Vale came close again moments later as winger Chris Birchall darted down the left wing and delivered a powerful low cross for Enoch Andoh, who slid in missing the ball and colliding with Colchester keeper Jones. The collision meant the end of the game for Andoh, who was replaced by Ryan Lloyd.

Colchester’s first real chance came through defender Tom Eastman whose low strike from close range was cleared off the line by Anthony Grant following a goal mouth scramble after Callum Harriott’s powerful drive was blocked.

Harriott continued to cause problems as the U’s started to put their stamp on the game after a large early spell of Port Vale possession. It was Harriott who gave Colchester their best chance of the game so far 11 minutes in, when his low cross from the right was nearly diverted in by the shin of Valiants defender Carl Dickinson. 

A minute later however the U’s were in front, after Darren Ambrose’s intitial corner from the right was blocked, the ball fell back at his feet for him to deliver a pinpoint cross to the awaiting U’s defender George Elokobi, who volleyed home.

The goal put the U’s fans in good voice, and also a few of the club’s furry supporters as dog noises could be heard to the bemusement of the crowd. 

Vale looked to respond on 32 minutes when Ryan Lloyd’s floated left wing cross just evaded the head of striker Uche Ikpeazu.

Shortly after this the Valiants found themselves with another injury problem as winger Birchall had to be substituted, he was replaced by Louie Dodds. On 33 minutes U’s keeper Jones made the save of the game acrobatically tipping Colin Daniel’s low power header round his right hand post. 

Vale’s long spells of possession eventually came to a goal, Vale substitute Lloyd caused problems again on the stroke of half time when his cross met the head of Daniel who diverted the ball past the dive of Jones to equalize for the Valiants.

The U’s looked close to regaining their lead shortly after in the 4 minutes of additional time, when Callum Harriott’s cross nearly ended up in the back of the net but for the flap of Vale keeper Jak Alnwick.

A minute after half time, defender Tom Eastman delivered a well timed ball over the top to set striker Marvin Sordell in chase, he however was just beaten to the ball by the head of Vale stopper Alnwick.

Shortly after this on 49 minutes, midfielder Owen Garvan was replaced by Joe Edwards, and Elokobi found himself off of the pitch after a collision that left him bleeding from his mouth, which left the U’s down to 10 men for a short while, much to the frustration of manager Tony Humes.

U’s winger Harriott was causing problems for Vale left back Carl Dickinson all game and his impressive trickery on 61 minutes set up George Moncur for a strike from the edge of the box which was blocked by the Vale defence.

Port Vale had a lot of the early possession in the second half but didn’t look like making a break through, the U’s however looked very dangerous on the counter.

The closest Vale really came to scoring was on 69 mins when Daniel tried some acrobatics on the edge of the area only to find row z.

The Valiants were made to pay for their lack of creativity on 73 minutes when Moncur was brought down in the box, the ball spilled out to Sordell who stroked the ball past Alnwick with ease.

Three minutes later the impressive Daniel was replaced for the Valiants by AJ Leitch-Smith as they looked to get back into the game, the U’s also made a change with Dion Sembie-Ferris replacing Ambrose.

Sordell and Harriott were showing some fantastic link up play and that nearly gave the U’s another goal on 85 minutes, when Sordell released Harriott down the left who was thwarted by the leg of Alnwick.

Harriott again looked like scoring when his impressive curler from the edge of the area crashed off of the post a minute before full time.

A 2-1 win for the U’s ends a run of three straight defeats and puts them 12th in Sky Bet League 1, and 5 points away from the play offs. Colchester will look to close the gap on Saturday when they face Walsall at the Weston Homes Community Stadium.

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