Sheffield United’s hoodoo over Colchester United continued on Saturday afternoon, as the Blades grabbed a late winner to take all three points at the Weston Homes Community Stadium.
The first half was a fairly uneventful affair as both teams looked to find a path to goal and it took a long ball forward out from the back to give the visitors the lead, as Billy Sharp kept his calm to roll the ball home.
The second half was a much stronger effort from the U’s, who pinned their Yorkshire opponents back for much of the second forty-five and got a more than deserved equaliser as Tom Eastman glanced the ball home to level things up.
But, despite that sustained pressure, which carried on after the leveller, it was the Blades who grabbed another heartbreaking goal against the U’s as Edgar got in at the near post to leave the U’s gutted.
The U’s went into the game unchanged and, such was the nature of that opening period, that it took until the quarter hour mark before either side had a genuine chance, with Sordell curling just wide of the upright.
Five minutes later, Sheffield were in front as Long kicked clear, Briggs misjudged the ball and Sharp took his time before rolling the ball home past Kean.
The visitors then controlled possession for much of the remainder of the half and took their lead into the interval.
Had the Blades thought that they would have had it as easy in the second half, they were mistaken as the U’s were at it from the off after the interval.
Sordell was in the thick of it, playing wider than in the first forty-five and sent over a series of dangerous crosses into the area.
The momentum was building and it was therefore no surprise the U’s got level just before the hour mark.
Gilbey had had a shot brilliantly saved by Long, but the keeper could do nothing about the U’s goal, as the ball was crossed into the area yet again for Eastman to cleverly glance home.
The U’s were on the front foot now and Massey nicked the ball in midfield to push the home side forward only for Long to pluck the ball out of the air once again from Porter’s cross.
Next, Garvan had a big shout for handball as his shot was blocked in the box, before his second effort flew well over.
Sharp fired straight at Kean with fifteen minutes left, under pressure from Brindley, but it was a rare occurrence in a second half where the U’s were calling the shots.
With six minutes left, the impressive Long pulled off a save with his legs and that was to prove crucial as the game wore to a close.
The Blades had a couple of corner kicks and it was from the third that they got a vital winner. Edgar darted to the front post and knocked home a decisive goal to separate the two sides.
On so many occasions over recent years, the Blades have broken U’s hearts with late winners and today’s game continued that painful trend for the Essex side.