'Like being back at Portman Road' - Huws on life with ex-Town stars at U's
- Credit: PA
Emyr Huws, whose long stay at Ipswich Town was so dogged by injury, has been making waves at his new club, Colchester United.
Huws capped his home debut for the U's with an injury-time equaliser in an amazing 1-1 draw against League Two promotion contenders Swindon Town on Saturday.
The 28-year-old swept home at the far post, from a 92nd minute corner, to seal an unlikely point for relegation-threatened Colchester.
The Essex club, with former Ipswich Town defender Wayne Brown as interim manager following Hayden Mullins' departure earlier in the month, looked dead and buried when trailing 1-0 and down to nine men following straight red cards for keeper Shamal George and defender Luke Chambers, a former team-mate of Huws at Ipswich.
But Huws, starting his third game for the U's, defied the odds with his first goal for more than a year - his previous goal had been an 80th minute winner for Town in a 2-1 victory over Burton Albion in December, 2020, which ended up being his penultimate appearance for the Suffolk club.
"It was quite controversial and I've never been in a game where we have had two players sent off," admitted Huws.
"But we kept going and we got what we deserved. Swindon are a good team, but even when we went down to nine men we still believed we would have a chance to get an equaliser. When you have that belief, you always have a chance.
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"In a way its been like being back at Portman Road, with all the other Ipswich lads here. It's nice.
"They are great lads, with great experience, and they are still great players.
"I'm really enjoying it, and loving life.
"It's not been that hard for me to get back into it. I had a bit of a break (since leaving Portman Road), but I still put the work in and made sure that I looked after myself.
"I thought it was time I got back into it, and I'm enjoying playing for Colchester," added Huws.
Welshman Huws only managed 44 league appearances, and 55 in all competitions, during his four-and-a-half years at Portman Road.
Initially arriving on loan from Cardiff City in January, 2017, Huws signed a permanent deal with a four-year package at the end of the season.
But his progress was checked by a long-term knee injury, and he ended up failing to land a regular spot in the Town starting XI.
Out of the game for half-a-year, and without playing a competitive match for a year, an out-of-sorts Huws, who can speak fluent Welsh, has finally been given a chance to resurrect his professional career at Colchester - he signed a short-term deal until the end of the season on January 15.
He made his debut in a 3-2 defeat at Sutton United, before helping the U's to five points in the last three matches with a 3-0 win at Salford, that 1-1 draw against Swindon and another 1-1 draw at home to Rochdale last night.
"It doesn't feel like I'm playing in a relegation team," added Huws.
"Of course people can paint whatever picture they want, but we've got some momentum and some energy."
In addition to Huws and Chambers, the U's starting XI on Saturday also featured former Ipswich players Cole Skuse, Alan Judge and Freddie Sears, in addition to Town loanee Myles Kenlock at left-back.
Judge was on target last night - a cracking long range goal - with Kenlock getting the assist. Another ex-Town player, Tom Eastman, replaced Chambers in defence.
The U's are just two places above the relegation zone, but they do have a buffer of eight points.