Strong character earns a 2-1 win.
Colchester United bounced back from a heavy weekend defeat in perfect style on Tuesday night to record a 2-1 win over Port Vale.
The U’s showed great strength of character to bounce back not only from that reverse at Wigan, but also an equaliser on the stroke of half time from the Valiants.
The win ensured that they moved back into the top half as they extended their recent good run at home to just one defeat in their last twelve games in front of their own supporters at the Weston Homes Community Stadium.
The U’s started the brighter in their latest home game but were thankful to the efforts of Jamie Jones through the opening half as he pulled off several good stops.
The home side almost took the lead on sixteen minutes as Tom Eastman showed quick feet from a recycled corner, only for his effort to be cleared off the line by a desperate clearance.
However, they did get their noses in front midway through the first half and it was Eastman’s fellow defender George Elokobi who got it with his second of the season.
He took a touch with his thigh and then let it drop to smash home an unstoppable effort to put the U’s ahead.
The teams then traded chances in the remainder of the half, with Gilbey seeing a dipping volley go just over before Daniel had a flying header tipped away by a full length Jones save.
The U’s didn’t heed that warning, though, as Vale got level in the final minute of the half. Substitute Lloyd was the man to cross the ball and again Daniel rose highest to stab home a fine header.
The home side came out the stronger in the second half, although the third quarter of the game was one with relatively limited chances.
Owen Garvan limped off to be replaced by Joe Edwards and his fellow midfielder George Moncur was at the heart of much of the U’s good work in the second half.
He swept in a shot that Alnwick saved well, before setting up Olufemi, who curled a shot just past the far upright with his left foot.
Three minutes later, though, the U’s were back in front. Moncur danced his way into the box and it looked like the home side might be awarded a penalty, but Sordell seized on the loose ball to make it 2-1.
It was the U's fifth win of the season and it was one with big character that saw the home side to victory.
Gilbey tested the reactions of Alnwick as the U’s finished the game the stronger. Harriott then went closer still, as he earned some space on the edge of the box before curling in a shot that pinged off the post with the keeper beaten.