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Match Reports

Harry Leaves It Late

Pell injury time header earns U's win

7 December 2019

Colchester United have beaten league newcomers Salford City

An exhilarating last minute header from Harry Pell sent the U’s fans wild in celebration, as he gave Colchester United all three points.

The U's had been the better team for much of the ninety minutes, but had been unable to beat Chris Neal in the Salford goal, who had saved well a number of times earlier on.

Both teams took a little while to settle into a rhythm, but Courtney Senior was first to have a crack at goal. Luke Prosser cushioned a header down to him after a corner, but the U’s winger could only strike wide.

Salford went close next, with Luke Armstrong narrowly heading wide from a dangerous looping free kick. With Harry Pell marking him, Armstrong found it difficult to get any space, and headed into the side netting.

It was the U’s who would push on in the first half though with Senior seemingly a man on a mission.

Taking the game to Salford, he sprinted forward on a number of occasions, most notably when he rode three challenges only to be brought down on the edge of the area by Richard Towell.

The game was heading towards half time goalless, with Luke Norris slipping just at the wrong point in a great position.

Ryan Jackson found him in the area, but just as Luke turned to shoot, he slipped and could only find the arms of Chris Neal in the away goal.

Comley tried his luck from twenty five yards out with a swerving drive, but for the seemingly impenetrable Neal to get down quickly and push over the bar.

The teams headed into the break at 0-0, with the half time whistle coming at a bad time for the U's as they were really on top and pressing for an opener.

Salford came out for the second half and started the better side. Jackson misplaced his pass, and could only find Towell, who drove at Gerken in the U’s goal but could only scuff his shot wide and out of danger.

Salford then lofted in a dangerous cross from a free kick – Gerken attempted to collect but misjudged the flight of the ball. Luckily so did Jake Jervis who couldn’t make contact and direct goalwards.

The visitors did have the ball in the net with Armstrong tapping in from six yards out, but as he turned around to celebrate he would’ve seen the linesman with his flag up.

Heading into the final twenty minutes, the U’s really started to put the pressure on. Norris worked extremely hard to create a chance by beating Burgess to the ball, before striking agonisingly wide of the goal.

Robinson and Gambin came on for the final fifteen minutes to try and find a winner, and it looked like it would never come until the dying seconds of the game.

Bramall put across a corner which was flicked on by Frank Nouble, before a fantastic diving header from Harry Pell into the corner gave the U’s fans something to really cheer about.

Having scored, he jumped up and sprinted half the pitch to celebrate with the joyful U’s bench and staff.

The result lifts the U’s up to eight in the SkyBet League Two table, just one point behind Northampton who occupy the final play off spot.

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