Colchester United: Carl Marston’s nostalgia
- Credit: PA Wire/PA Photos
Colchester United have never faced Forest Green Rovers before, so instead of recalling an old meeting of the two clubs, U’s writer Carl Marston looks back at some previous poor starts to a campaign:
The U’s have never faced Forest Green Rovers before, so instead of recalling an old meeting of the two clubs, Carl Marston looks back at some previous poor starts to a campaign:
If the U’s do not beat Forest Green Rovers today, then they will have failed to win any of their first four league games of the season. But that does not necessarily spell disaster, or even a season of struggle.
The obvious example is the U’s first of two seasons as a Championship club, back in 2006-07, when Geraint Williams’ men lost their first four league games, at Birmingham and West Brom, and at home to Plymouth and Barnsley.
But instead of facing up to a campaign of fending off potential relegation, the U’s ended up pushing for the play-offs on the back of a fantastic sequence of 11 home league wins on the bounce.
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The U’s eventually finished 10th, in the second tier. Having lost their first four games, they only lost eight more all season!
Likewise, George Burley’s short reign as U’s boss began with four straight league defeats at the start of the 1994-95 season. The U’s were beaten by Torquay, Mansfield, Doncaster and Exeter, to sink into the bottom two of the Football League, by the end of August.
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But Burley’s boys then found their feet with a battling 1-0 win at fellow strugglers Scarborough, via midfielder Tony Dennis’ winner, and never really looked back.
By the time that Burley resigned, on Christmas Eve of that year (1994), the U’s were in the play-off frame. They eventually finished 10th.
So don’t despair of a slow start!