Late penalty denies U's victory

TEN-MAN Colchester United felt hard done by as visiting Barnsley snatched a point in a 2-2 draw with a controversial penalty in an incident-packed Championship showdown at Layer Road.

By Carl Marston

TEN-MAN Colchester United felt hard done by as visiting Barnsley snatched a point in a 2-2 draw with a controversial penalty in an incident-packed Championship showdown at Layer Road.

The U's appeared to be heading for victory until referee Andy Hall awarded the Tykes an 85th minute penalty, apparently for handball against Johnnie Jackson, although Kim Christensen's shot seemed to hit the U's midfielder in the back.

Brian Howard tucked home the spot kick to earn the visitors a draw. But that was only half the story of what was a dramatic afternoon.


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The U's were down to 10 men after just 26 minutes, when Mr Hall sent off keeper Dean Gerken for a foul on Kayode Odejayi inside the box. It was deemed a professional foul.

On came teenager Mark Cousins as a substitute keeper, but he could not prevent Howard from converting the penalty to put Barnsley one-up.

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The U's were level before half-time, thanks to Teddy Sheringham's marvellous close-range finish from Geore Elokobi's cross, and they went 2-1 up in the 48th minute through Matthew Connolly's header from Johnnie Jackson's corner.

Barnsley were then reduced to 10 men with skipper Paul Reid dismissed for elbowing Sheringham, after which it looked as though Colchester would hold on for a first win of the season, until Howard's controversial late penalty.

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