United have now kept three consecutive clean sheets in the League. This is their best run since April 2016, when they won 1-0 at Newport, drew 0-0 at home to Carlisle and thrashed Morecambe 7-0 at the Abbey.
Today’s attendance of 4,511 is unique in United’s history, that exact number never having been recorded before for a U’s match. It is however very close to the 4,521 who attended this fixture at Colchester on 13th August last year, and indeed the 4,518 who came to the same fixture at Layer Road on 29th December 1997.
United have now risen to 12th place in the table. After five League matches last season United were bottom of the League with two points. At this juncture the two seasons before that, the U’s were 9th both times.
Second-time loanee George Taft is the 21st man to be allocated the number 12 shirt at the Abbey since squad numbering was introduced in 1999. The previous incumbents were: Michael Kyd, Tom Cowan, Daniel Chillingworth, Igor Latte-Yedo, Ryan Lockett, Jon Brady, Josh Simpson, Leo Fortune-West, Jack Jeffery, Josh Coulson, Rory McAuley, Matteo Lanzoni, Jacob Blyth, Alie Sesay, Terry Kennedy, Lewis Page, Max Clark, Keith Keane, Scott Wharton and Mark Roberts. Jeffery, Blyth, Sesay, Kennedy, Page, Clark and Wharton were also loanees.
Forde 8. Immense once again. Such a reassuring presence.
Halliday 9. Far too good for this level.
Legge 6. Some distinctly shaky moments in the first half, more settled in the second.
Taylor 7. Looks as if he has been a centre-back all his career.
Dunk 7. Reliable turn.
Elito 6. Floated around fairly competently.
Deegan 8. Vital fulcrum.
Maris 7. Busy as ever.
Brown 9. Settled in unbelievably quickly. We have a real find on our hands here.
Azeez 6. Fairly anonymous.
Ikpeazu 8. Still has a lot to learn, especially in decision making, but makes things happen.
Ibehre 7. The team moved up a level once he came on and started linking with Ikpeazu.
Mingoia 6. Decent contribution.
Carroll 6. Filled in quietly.
United’s improvement – both in terms of results and quality of football – continued with a deserved win over a modest Colchester side. Greater tests await around the corner.
Man of the Match
Brad Halliday. A modern full-back of truly exceptional energy and quality.
Kinseley 5. Handed out some unnecessary bookings and seemed oblivious to the existence of the advantage rule.
Soundtrack of the Day
Lucy Rose “Second Chance”