Cambridge United made it three wins on the bounce in Sky Bet League Two with an excellently controlled performance, to run out 1-0 victors over Notts County at the Abbey Stadium.
Medy Elito’s first half goal was enough to see United over the line, as Joe Dunne’s men guarded their advantage to defeat their top seven opponents under the midweek floodlights.
The U’s were forced into two changes with George Maris (concussion) and Barry Corr (groin) missing through injury, as Liam O’Neil and Medy Elito returned to the starting eleven.
The U’s went close with a series of early mid-range efforts, O’Neil’s 20 yard shot wide before Ikpeazu’s low attempt fizzed narrowly the wrong side of the near post.
The closest the visitors came in the first period came when Liam Noble’s attempted lob was watched comfortably over the cross bar by U’s keeper David Forde on 26 minutes.
And on 30 minutes, with the U’s beginning to take the ascendency, Elito broke the deadlock timing his run perfectly to latch on to the end of Jevani Brown’s deflected shot before rounding Adam Collin the Notts goalkeeper and prodding home.
United continued to enjoy the remainder of the first half, with Waters testing Collin as he bent a shot towards the far post, which the County keeper tipped wide, before Brad Halliday jinked through the Magpies defence soon after saved by Collin’s left boot on this occasion.
The U’s showed excellent grit and a great deal of game management throughout the second half to limit the Magpies to any clear cut goal scoring opportunities, with George Taft, Greg Taylor and Gary Deegan in particular protecting David Forde in the United goal.
In fact with the addition of extra width from David Amoo and Harrison Dunk, who was pushed up on to the left wing following the introduction of Jake Carroll midway through the second 45 minutes, and with Uche Ikpeazu’s dominant performance leading the line for United, it was the hosts who looked the more likely to score next on the counter attack.
As it was though a single goal sufficed as the U’s protected their lead impeccably to move into 13th in the Sky Bet League Two table.
Cambridge United: Forde, Halliday, Taft, Taylor, Dunk, O’Neil, Deegan, Brown, Elito (Carroll, 64 mins), Waters (Amoo, 68 mins), Ikpeazu
Notts County: Collin, Tootle, Hewitt, Duffy, Alessandra (Virtue-Thick, 90 mins), Grant (Forte, 79 mins), Noble, Husin (Ameobi, 45 mins), Jones, Hall, Stead
Attendance: 3524 (321)
Vindis Man of the Match: Brad Halliday