Now U’s going to believe us says Tony
THEY have only narrowly avoided relegation in each of the last two seasons, so it is probably not surprising that Colchester United have launched another concerted League One survival bid.
Colchester’s win at outof-form Port Vale means they have now taken seven points from a possible nine and are four points adrift of safety, with seven games remaining.
The task is still tough but they have at least given themselves a chance, after goals from George Moncur and Jacob Murphy gave the U’s victory at a rain-sodden Vale Park.
Colchester manager Tony Humes said: “We’ve got seven points from nine now and it gives us that belief that it’s possible we can do it.
“We started slowly and they caused us a few problems, but we stuck at it and once we saw out the first 20 minutes, I thought we looked quite comfortable.
“I thought we caused them an awful lot of problems in the second half and to score the first goal was a huge thing for us.
“Port Vale threw everything at us in the final ten minutes but we stood up to it well and got a fantastic three points.”
Vale were booed off by their own fans after a fifth successive defeat left them four points above the relegation zone.
Valiants boss Rob Page said: “It wasn’t a good day at all and the players are bitterly disappointed.
“Nobody enjoys losing games of football, especially in the position we find ourselves in, at this moment in time.
“We’re in a battle and I’ve said to the players that this is a test of character for us – we need lads who want to go out and give everything.
“I’ve never questioned their effort or their attitude and they’re a great group of lads, but we have to roll our sleeves up now.
“We can’t cry about it and we need a response again on Monday.”
Mark Marshall, Louis Dodds and Carl Dickinson all went close for Port Vale in the first half, while Chris Birchall had an effort disallowed for offside.
Colchester rarely threatened before half-time, although recalled home keeper Sam Johnson did deny Moncur just before the break.
However, the U’s took the lead just before the hour when Moncur slotted past Johnson after linking up well with Chris Porter in the area.
And Colchester doubled their lead with 13 minutes remaining when Murphy ran towards goal and drilled a low shot into the far bottom corner.
Dodds reduced the deficit for Vale with seven minutes remaining when he fired home after Marshall’s corner had not been properly cleared by the U’s, but the visitors held on for a valuable win.
STAR MAN GEORG