Plucky U’s suffer sixth defeat on the spin
17:00 26 December 2012
Colchester United 1 Brentford 3
COLCHESTER United suffered their sixth defeat on the bounce, but they produced a gutsy display against visiting Brentford this afternoon.
The U’s were 2-0 down and also down to 10 men inside the first 11 minutes, with Marcelo Trotta and Adam Forshaw both on target for the Bees, and Josh Thompson sent off for a professional foul.
However, the U’s gave Brentford a real scare. Drey Wright marked his full league debut with a superb goal, and the visitors were then reduced to 10 men themselves when Tom Adeyemi was sent off for two bookable offences late in the first period.
Joe Dunne’s men gave it a real go in the second period, but they could not fashion an equaliser and Harlee Dean netted a late third to seal Brentford’s ninth win in their last 11 games.
It was a disastrous start for the U’s, in terms of goals conceded and also a red card.
Trotta calmly slotted the in-form Bees into a fourth minute lead, by converting Donaldson’s knock down with a lethal shot into the roof of the net.
And centre-half Thompson was then sent off on nine minutes, for hauling down Donaldson just outside the box.
Portsmouth loanee Thompson could have few complaints, because the lively Donaldson was homing in on goal.
Worse was to come, because Forshaw fired the ensuing free-kick into the top corner of the net to leave the 10-man U’s facing up to a potential mauling.
But the U’s refused to let their heads go down. Their response was excellent and Wright duly halved the deficit on 24 minutes.
Club skipper Kem Izzet won an important challenge in midfield and Wright did the rest, twisting and turning before unleashing an accurate shot into the bottom corner of the net, from the edge of the box.
Brentford were shaken, and it was their turn to be reduced to 10 men in the last minute of the first half – Adeyemi dismissed for two yellow cards, the second for a late tackle on Izzet.
The U’s had the momentum in the second period, without creating too many chances, although Tom Eastman did send a looping header over the bar from John White’s cross on 73 minutes.
Four minutes later and substitute Freddie Ladapo forced keeper Richard Lee into a smart save, down by his near post.
But the Londoners weathered the storm and struck late on via Dean’s point blank range finish, to make it 3-1.
COLCHESTER: Cousins, White, Thompson, Eastman, Potts, Bean, Gilbey (sub Okuonghae, 10), Izzet (sub O’Toole, 82), Massey (sub Ladapo, 62), Morrison, Wright. Subs: Pentney, Duguid, Bond, Wilson.
BRENTFORD: Lee, Hodson, Craig, Dean, Bidwell, Forshaw (sub Diagouraga, 72), Douglas, Adeyemi, Trotta (sub Logan, 58), Donaldson, Forrester. Subs: Saunders, Gounet, Reeves, Hayes, Kiernan.
Referee: Gavin Ward (Surrey)