FOUR-SOME U’S BASH UP BORO

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

COLCHESTER United head coach John McGreal says his play­ers are do­ing the club proud af­ter they thumped Stevenage to close in on the play-off places.

The U’s are just two points adrift of the top seven af­ter sweep­ing aside fel­low pro­mo­tion-hope­fuls Stevenage, fol­low­ing an elec­tric first-half dis­play.

Bren­nan Dick­en­son and Chris Porter put Colchester two goals ahead, be­fore own goals from Boro pair Josh Mc­Quoid and Char­lie Lee gave the hosts a four-goal lead at the break.

And although the sec­ond half failed to pro­duce any fur­ther goals, the U’s were big win­ners.

McGreal said: “We’ve got some­thing to play for and we’ve kept our­selves in it.

“With the in­juries we’ve had and what’s gone on through the sea­son, the boys have done us proud and we have a great chance.

“I thought the lads were fan­tas­tic.

“We did a lot of home­work on Stevenage, es­pe­cially af­ter los­ing at Notts County.

“Stevenage have been ter­rific with some of the re­sults and per­for­mances that they’ve been putting to­gether and we knew it was go­ing to be a tough game.

“We needed to start well and that gave us the plat­form to go on.”

Stevenage now have a five­point cush­ion in­side the top seven, af­ter fall­ing to their first de­feat in four matches.

Boro boss Darren Sarll said: “The play­ers have had great praise over the last cou­ple of months and we’ve con­ceded one goal in the whole of March and now we’ve con­ceded four times in one game in April.

“We can’t stand here and say that as a club, we’re go­ing to ac­cept that.

“The play­ers’ form of late gives them a lit­tle bit of breath­ing space, in terms of crit­i­cism, but it does make us come back down to earth and think like nor­mal peo­ple again.

“Hope­fully, it’ll be the fire and mo­ti­va­tion that drives us on for the re­main­ing five games of the sea­son.”

Colchester wing-back Richard Brind­ley hit the wood­work be­fore the hosts took an 11th-minute lead through Dick­en­son, who lashed home af­ter Drey Wright had helped on Tarique Fosu’s cross.

Stevenage’s Matt God­den was de­nied by a fine dou­ble save from keeper Sam Walker, be­fore the U's dou­bled their lead just be­fore the half-hour mark through Porter’s close-range strike, sec­onds af­ter Ge­orge Elokobi’s header had hit a post.

Colchester went fur­ther ahead in the 33rd minute through Mc­Quoid’s own goal, af­ter Tom East­man had helped on Sean Mur­ray’s cor­ner.

And when Lee headed Fosu’s cross into his own net seven min­utes be­fore half-time, Stevenage were shell-shocked.

Walker de­nied Jobi McAnuff and Jack King stabbed wide in the sec­ond half for Stevenage, but Colchester recorded an em­phatic win as they pro­duced a mem­o­rable per­for­mance to take the points.

PIC­TURES: ProS­ports/ Nigel Cole

STAR MAN TARIQUE FOSU Colchester GIVE ME SOME LOVE: Colchester play­ers en­joy the mo­ment as they go 4-0 up. Inset: Bren­nan Dick­en­son blasts the ball home

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