Carefully now for Yeates as U's on brink
MARK Yeates, in the tradition of former Colchester United favourites Lomana Lua Lua and Scott McGleish, scored a cracking goal but then injured himself in the celebrations!Yeates drilled home a marvellous right-footed shot early in the second-half to seal a precious 2-0 win over relegation-haunted Rotherham on Saturday.
By Carl Marston
MARK Yeates, in the tradition of former Colchester United favourites Lomana Lua Lua and Scott McGleish, scored a cracking goal but then injured himself in the celebrations!
Yeates drilled home a marvellous right-footed shot early in the second-half to seal a precious 2-0 win over relegation-haunted Rotherham on Saturday.
That result leaves the U's just one point away from fulfilling their dream of winning promotion to the Championship, and so playing against the likes of Ipswich, Norwich, Sunderland and Birmingham next season.
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If Phil Parkinson's men can secure at least a draw at Yeovil next Saturday, then third-placed Brentford will be unable to overhaul them, whatever the outcome of their trip to Bournemouth.
Ex-U's star Lua Lua has missed Portsmouth's successful late dash for Premiership safety, after injuring himself while celebrating a goal, and former Colchester leading scorer McGleish has also missed games for Northampton in the past, for failing to fully execute his post-goal somersaults.
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On Saturday, Yeates left Layer Road with his shoulder strapped up, but only after helping the U's take another big step towards promotion.
“The shoulder is very sore, and I'm not quite sure how I did it!” confessed goal-hero Yeates.
“Perhaps it was when I thought that I could fly, following my goal. It didn't hurt then, but it began to feel sore just two or three minutes later.
“I've had some treatment from the physio, and it's all strapped up now, so I can't move much. I'll take some pain-killers and hopefully it's nothing serious. I don't want to miss next Saturday's big game at Yeovil,” added Yeates.
U's left-winger Yeates, who has been on loan from Tottenham all season, wants to sign off with a promotion-clinching result at Huish Park. And he hasn't completely ruled out a return to Layer Road next season.
“As for the future, I will be back at Tottenham preparing for pre-season,” explained Yeates.
“It will be good for my CV to have helped a team to win promotion, but playing for Colchester in the Championship is also an option. We'll have to wait and see.
“I've played for Tottenham a few times before (four appearances), and last season I was always in the squad and travelled to every away game.
“I've been in regular contact with Tottenham all season, including Chris Hughton (coach) and Clive Allen (reserve team manager), and they have someone watching me at nearly every game.”
Republic of Ireland Under-21 international Yeates notched his sixth goal of the season, to kill off the challenge of Rotherham.
He continued: “It's been a great day for me, and the team. Scoring the second goal was crucial to settle the nerves.
“I set myself a target of scoring 10 goals this season, so I'm behind schedule, although if I hadn't hit the post and the bar so many times, then I'd be in double figures by now!
“I don't want us to miss out on automatic promotion, not least because I've been struggling with a hernia for the last three or four matches.
“That might need an operation in the summer. It's been a long, hard season,” concluded Yeates.