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U's Draw At Morecambe

Nouble opener not enough at Globe Arena

11 January 2020

Colchester United have drawn 1-1at Morecambe

The U's extended their unbeaten run to twelve games after being pegged back to draw 1-1 on the wet and windy North West coast. 

Frank Nouble scored his fifth goal of the season to give the U’s a first half lead after smashing the ball into the back of the net from a Ryan Clampin cross. 

The travelling U’s were pegged back in the second half as Adam Phillips scored on his Morecambe debut, heading past Gerken from a John O’Sullivan cross. 

Ryan Jackson picked up a second yellow and was dismissed seven minutes from the final whistle after fouling Mendes Gomes for both offences and will now miss the next game at home to Macclesfield in a week's time.

The U's drop one place to ninth in Sky Bet League Two after picking up a point on the road, now three behind Forest Green who occupy the final play off spot, and Northampton Town who sit eighth.  

Chances were at a premium in the first half with both sides battling the elements as the rain lashed down at the Globe Arena in Morecambe. 

Frank Nouble was set free down the right flank after Ben Stevenson had found a defence splitting pass. He managed to get the better of Conlan before aiming a cross at Poku, but it was just behind the U’s youngster and the home side were able to clear. 

Cole Stockton won a foul after being challenged by Luke Prosser on the edge of the area, setting up a dangerous free kick for the home side. Adam Phillips stepped up from just outside the edge of the area and shot just over Dean Gerken’s bar.

On eighteen minutes Luke Norris had the first shot for Colchester of the afternoon, and it was one that needed saving by the home ‘keeper Mark Halstead.

From a tight angle, Norris struck across goal, only for the fingertips of Halsetad pushing the ball wide and out for a corner. 

With twenty minutes played the rain got a lot heavier and made conditions very difficult for both sides This was illustrated when Dean Gerken tried to take a goal kick that blew back into the U’s half in blustery and wet conditions. 

The U’s were able to adapt better and managed to get their noses in front with ten minutes left to play in the first half.

Ryan Clampin was able to get down the left flank before delivering a cross towards the middle of the penalty area.

Frank Nouble managed to get in front of his man and direct the ball beyond Halstead and into the back of the net to give the U's the lead. 

Luke Norris was close to putting the U’s two ahead with five minutes until the break, as Harriott picked out the striker on the apex of the area. Norris shot towards the far post only for a deflection to take it wide and out for a corner. 

The last chance of the half fell to Harry Pell, who struck towards goal from twenty-five yards out, but for a deflection to take it just wide of the post as Halstead in the home goal had dived the other way. 

The half time whistle blew with the U’s on top and a goal ahead thanks to Frank Nouble. 

The home side came out fighting in the second half and nearly scored through the dangerous Mendes Gomes three minutes into the second half. He slid in from a cross and shot at Prosser who deflected the ball out for a corner. 

Slew was next to try his luck but couldn’t find a way past Gerken in the U’s goal. He shot towards the near post, but Dean got a strong hand to push the ball away and out of danger. 

Three minutes later and Colchester could have doubled their lead. Poku danced through three Morecambe players before striking across the goal.

Unluckily for him and the travelling side, the ball bounced off the foot of the post and Harriott couldn’t get the rebound in. 

In an end to end game the next chance fell to Morecambe, and Slew. He blazed over the bar as Gerken spilled a Stockton shot, a chance he really should have scored. 

Just four minutes later and the home side were level. An unmarked Adam Phillips scored his first goal for the home side as he flicked the ball past Gerken and into the back of the net from a John O’Sullivan cross. 

Nouble had a chance to put the U’s back in front after taking on two players and tenaciously driving towards goal, but for a poor effort to be easily collected by Halstead.

Colchester would have to play the remaining seven minutes of the game with ten men, as Ryan Jackson picked up a second yellow card for a challenge on Carlos Mendes Gomes on the edge of the area – the same player he fouled to get his first booking.

AJ Leitch-Smith blew a couple of good opportunities to win the game for the home side in the last few moments of the game. 

His first chance was a volley from ten yards out that he blasted over the bar, a good chance and one he really should have kept down. 

As the game entered injury time he dribbled into the box and shot at the near post only for the sliding Tom Lapslie to get his body in front and prevent what almost certainly would have been the winning goal for Morecambe. 

The U’s pick up a point but slip one place down the table to ninth with Northampton moving ahead after a win at Salford. 

Colchester United will return to the JobServe Community Stadium next Saturday for a clash against the struggling Macclesfield who are twenty second in the table.

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