Colchester United 1 Aston Villa 2, match report: Brave U’s knocked out by Villa
- Credit: Picture: Steve Waller
Colchester United 1 Aston Villa 2
Colchester United bowed out of the Carabao Cup at the hands of Championship visitors Aston Villa tonight, but not without putting up a real fight.
The U’s were trailing by two goals, inside the first 19 minutes, through Scott Hogan’s opener and Frankie Kent’s own goal, these goals sandwiching a missed penalty by Mikael Mandron, whose spot kick was saved by keeper Jed Steer.
But Kent deservedly pulled a goal back in the 39th minute, and Sammie Szmodics was denied an equaliser by a stunning save from Steer with eight minutes remaining.
It was a bad error by Sam Walker which led to Villa taking the lead, after just seven minutes.
Andre Green latched onto Callum O’Hare’s well-weighted pass and tried his luck with a low, skidding shot which should have been smothered by Walker.
However, the U’s keeper allowed the slippery ball to escape from his clutches, and Hogan’s follow-up shot from the rebound rolled into an unguarded net.
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Green was inside the six-yard box when the ball trickled over the goal-line, but correctly there was no offside decision.
The U’s should really have been level just two minutes later, when they were awarded a penalty for Christopher Samba’s foul on Sammie Szmodics inside the box.
But Mikael Mandron’s spot kick was well saved by Jed Steer, who guessed the right way to palm the ball to safety, and so deny the Frenchman a goal on his home debut.
It was entertaining fare, and Hogan nodded wide from ex Ipswich Town midfielder Conor Hourihane’s 15th minute free-kick.
Villa doubled their lead on 19 minutes, in unfortunate circumstances for the hosts. Winger Albert Adomah delivered a dangerous cross from the right flank, and Kent, at full stretch, could only steer the ball beyond his own keeper and into the net for an own goal.
The U’s went close to halving the deficit, just two minutes later, only for Szmodics’ close-range effort from Mandron’s knock-down to be cleared off the goal-line.
Szmodics was denied by keeper Steer in the 38th minute. Drey Wright did well to hold off the challenge of the towering Samba and thread the ball through for Szmodics, whose snap shot was parried at his near post by Steer.
But just 60 seconds later and the U’s did pull a goal back, as debutant Kyel Reid’s 20-yard shot was guided home by the alert Kent, after Villa had failed to deal with a corner.
Villa started the second half brightly, and Walker did well to save Hogan’s signing low drive, down at his near post on 48 minutes.
Walker kept the U’s in the hunt with a double save on 65 minutes. He superbly parried Hourihane’s shot, and when Adomah’s effort from the rebound was cleared off the goal-line by Cameron James, it was Walker who obliged again with a one-handed save from Adomah’s second follow-up.
Szmodics so nearly forced extra-time, only for his goal-bound shot to be turned away by the acrobatics of Steer in the 82nd minute.
COLCHESTER: Walker, James, Kent, Kpekawa, Jackson, Lapslie (sub Slater, 65), Murray, Reid (sub Kinsella, 68), Szmodics, Wright (sub Johnstone, 82), Mandron. Unused subs: Gilmartin, Vincent-Young, O’Sullivan, Issa.
ASTON VILLA: Steer, Bree, Samba, Chester, Bjarnason, Hourihane, Onomah, Adomah (sub Hepburn-Murphy, 68), Green (sub De Laet), O’Hare, Hogan (sub Davis, 72). Unused subs: Bunn, Lansbury, Doyle-Hayes, Clark,
Referee: M J Brooks (Leics)
Attendance: 6,603 (1,559 away fans)