“I think they’ve still got a great chance” – former Colchester United defender John White

Former U's defender John White on the ball for Southend, with U's winger Callum Harriott in close at

Former U's defender John White on the ball for Southend, with U's winger Callum Harriott in close attendance - Credit: Archant

John White may have returned to haunt his former club, Colchester United, with the opening goal in Southend’s 2-0 win at the Community Stadium on Boxing Day, but he is still hopeful that his old team can pull clear of the relegation zone this season.

White never scored in his 10 years as a senior professional with the U’s, spanning 255 games between 2003 and 2013.

But the Southend right-back shocked his former club by volleying home the 49th minute opener in front of a bumper festive crowd.

White’s goal sent the U’s tumbling to their eighth straight league defeat, but the stalwart defender still had some words of encouragement for Kevin Keen’s new charges.

“Colchester gave us a hard game,” insisted White.

“It’s early days for the new manager (Keen). He’s not really had a chance yet to get his feet under the table too much, and to get his ways across to the boys.

“I think they’ve still got a great chance of picking things up, and hopefully then picking up some results.

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“They’ve got good spirit amongst the lads, and they did put us under a fair amount of pressure at times.

“You could say that Colchester were unfortunate not to get something out of the game,” added White.

The U’s are away at third-placed Gillingham this afternoon.

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