Colch­ester still holds sway for Parkin­son

The Football League Paper - - LEAGUE ONE - By Jon Wal­dron

HE as­sem­bled what was ar­guably Colch­ester United’s most suc­cess­ful side, after lead­ing them to a his­toric pro­mo­tion to the Cham­pi­onship in 2006.

So it is per­haps un­sur­pris­ing that Phil Parkin­son still has a soft spot for his for­mer club.

Parkin­son re­turned to Colch­ester with his Brad­ford City side and claimed a hard-earned point fol­low­ing a goal­less draw at the We­ston Homes Com­mu­nity Sta­dium.

And although the U’s are cur­rently lan­guish­ing in a po­si­tion in League One’s bot­tom four, they have a bright fu­ture ac­cord­ing to Parkin­son, who was given a warm wel­come.

Parkin­son said: “Colch­ester have got some good play­ers and we saw last year when we played them in the youth fi­nal what they’re do­ing.

“You’re see­ing the re­sults of that now with the young play­ers and that’s what Colch­ester are all about.

“It was like that when I was there, when we had the likes of Greg Hal­ford, Garry Richards, George Elokobi, Dean Gerken and John White.

“Those play­ers gelled to­gether re­ally well and they gave us a team spirit and con­trib­uted to the suc­cess we had.

“I’ll never for­get my time there and they’re one of the clubs whose re­sults I will al­ways look out for.

“But for us to follow the win at MK Dons with a point here was good, con­sid­er­ing the fact that we have three or four key play­ers miss­ing.”

Colch­ester boss Tony Humes was pleased to see his side reg­is­ter another clean sheet, de­spite the draw keep­ing them in the bot­tom four.

“It was a good, solid per­for­mance and we were pa­tient,” said Humes.

“It was re­ally pleas­ing to keep a clean sheet and that’s three in four games now. The first half was a re­ally cagey, cat and mouse af­fair and nei­ther side gave any­thing away.

“In the sec­ond half, we put a few dif­fer­ent things in place and I thought the play­ers took it on re­ally well.

“Brad­ford de­fended well and were very com­pact, which is what we ex­pected but we got more suc­cess in the sec­ond half.

“Their goal­keeper made some good saves and at least we had some op­por­tu­ni­ties and some ef­forts on tar­get.”

Colch­ester had the bet­ter of the chances in a game where de­fences were largely on top.

Brad­ford goal­keeper Jor­dan Pick­ford de­nied Sanchez Watt and George Mon­cur early on, while at the other end Fred­die Sears fired wide.

Mark Yeates tested Sam Walker early after the break but Mon­cur’s shot flashed wide and Sears’ ef­fort was cleared off the line as it ended a draw.

STAR MAN GARY LID­DLE Bradfo

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