Cureton in race for the Golden Boot

THE race is on to win the golden boot, and Colchester United goal-ace Jamie Cureton will take some stopping!An in-form Cureton moved up to second in the Championship's goalscoring charts, following his devastating hat-trick to sink hosts Southend 3-0 on Good Friday.

By Carl Marston

THE race is on to win the golden boot, and Colchester United goal-ace Jamie Cureton will take some stopping!

An in-form Cureton moved up to second in the Championship's goalscoring charts, following his devastating hat-trick to sink hosts Southend 3-0 on Good Friday.

The 31-year-old is now on 20 league goals for the season, elevating him above the likes of Grzegorz Rasaik (Southampton), Diomansy Kamara (West Brom) and Robert Earnshaw (Norwich).


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Only Michael Chopra (21) has scored more, and the Cardiff City marksman has struggled for goals during the second half of the season.

Cureton has a great chance to win the award if he can continue his goal-scoring spree into the final five matches, beginning with today's visit of fourth-from-bottom Leeds.

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He said: “Scoring-wise, this has been a great season for me. It's been the best season of my career, even without my goals, because I've been very happy with my overall play.

“I can't thank Colchester United enough for giving me this chance. This was always going to be a massive opportunity for me to do well this season, and I've just got my head down and worked hard.

“The previous couple of seasons were a bit mixed for me, but now all of a sudden the goals are flying in, and in the Championship as well. That's football for you. It can soon turn.

“My original target was to score 15 goals, and then 20 goals. Now I want to keep pushing on.

Leeds are unbeaten in five games, taking 11 points from a possible 15 to move out of the relegation zone for the first time since November.

But Cureton is not concerned with Leeds, and their desire to avoid relegation, just as he had scant regard for Essex rivals Southend.

Cureton said: “We knew the situation that Southend were in, and we know that Leeds are in a similar position, but that doesn't bother me. I'm only concerned with Colchester.

“We're playing against another team fighting for their lives, but we're not in the business of helping them.

“We could do Southend a favour by beating Leeds.

“I'm feeling very confident at the moment, but it's not all about me.

“I couldn't have achieved any of this without the rest of the team.”

Leeds have specialised in scoring late goals in recent weeks.

David Healy scored a late equaliser to force a 1-1 draw at Southend, and the Irishman netted in the last minute to claim a 2-1 win over Preston.

On Saturday it was the turn of centre-half Lubomir Michalik to bag an 87th-minute winner against Plymouth (2-1).

As a result, they have leapfrogged Yorkshire rivals Barnsley in the table.

Only West Brom and Plymouth have so far doubled the U's this season, and Williams' men will be keen to prevent Leeds from following suit, after a disappointing 3-0 defeat at Elland Road last November.

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