MATCH REPORT: COLCHESTER UNITED 2 CAMBRIDGE UNITED 0Cambridge United’s ten match unbeaten streak came to an end at the Weston Holmes Community Stadium, as the U’s fell to a 2-0 defeat at the hands of Colchester United in Sky Bet League Two.
Shaun Derry made four changes to the side that began the clash against Sheffield Wednesday earlier in the week, with Maris, Legge, Norris and Taylor making their way into United’s starting line-up.
The home side took the lead in the fixture within ten minutes, when left winger Brennan Dickenson slammed in a left footed strike to Norris’ bottom left corner from 20 yards out.
In fact United were forced to hold on soon after, with Norris producing a stunning save to push over Sammie Szmodics’ long range effort from a similar positon to where the hosts had scored from minutes earlier.
Joe Pigott was only denied the chance to register the equaliser by an outstanding stop from Colchester keeper Sam Walker, who leapt to his right to push away the striker’s side footed shot.
However, Shaun Derry’s men were limited to opportunities on the Colchester target and spent large spells defending their own goal, with the likes of Dallison, Legge and Taylor all forced to throw their bodies on the line to stay in the game.
Perhaps the best block came from substitute Mark Roberts moments before the break, when the centre back stopped a Szmodics strike that looked certain to nestle in United’s net.
Conor Newton replaced George Maris at half time, and Shaun Derry’s men certainly saw more of the ball in the opening stages of the second period. However, John McGreal’s side offered a real danger on the counter attack and Chris Porter was inches away from doubling Colchester’s advantage when Drey Wright’s cross whistled past the striker’s face on 57 minutes.
Medy Elito was introduced by Derry on the hour mark and the winger almost levelled the game for the U’s five minutes later, when he arrived in the Colchester box late to meet Joe Pigott’s whipped delivery from the right with his head, but pushed it over the bar.
However, it was to be the hosts who would register the killer blow with nine minutes to play, when second half substitute Denny Johnstone guided the ball past Norris with his head from eight yards out to put the game out of Cambridge’s reach.
Cambridge United: Norris, Taylor, Legge, Dallison (Roberts, 41 mins), Long, Berry, Dunne, Mingoia, Maris (Newton, 45 mins), Pigott, Williamson (Elito, 60 mins)
Colchester United: Walker, Brindley, Lasplie, Prosser, Wright, Porter (Johnstone, 70 mins), Szmodics (Loft, 65 mins), Dickenson, Eastman, Gutherie (Slater, 90 mins), Kinsella
Attendance: 4,521 (1098 U’s fans)