Lisbie absent as U's hit four
Tiptree United 0 Colchester United 4KEVIN Lisbie was conspicuous by his absence, but his ready-made replacement Steven Gillespie bagged a hat-trick in Colchester United's first pre-season friendly at Essex neighbours Tiptree United last night.
Tiptree United 0 Colchester United 4
KEVIN Lisbie was conspicuous by his absence, but his ready-made replacement Steven Gillespie bagged a hat-trick in Colchester United's first pre-season friendly at Essex neighbours Tiptree United last night.
Lisbie, last season's leading scorer, remains on course to sign for Ipswich Town, yet the early signs are that Gillespie could bag a similar haul of goals for the U's this term.
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After a goalless first-half, it was the U's second-half XI that bagged all the goals against their tiring hosts, spearheaded by ex-Liverpool trainee Gillespie.
U's club record signing Gillespie, recruited for £400,000 from Cheltenham Town, opened his scoring account within nine minutes of his debut appearance.
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Geraint Williams' men had already taken a 48th minute lead, via a deflected shot from St Albans triallist Akanni-Sunday, when Gillespie steered home a cross from Anthony Wordsworth on 54 minutes.
And Gillespie doubled his tally just after the hour mark by chasing onto a slick through ball from fellow summer recruit, David Perkins, and beating keeper Matt Belcher with a clinical finish from just inside the box.
A couple of minutes later and Gillespie could have completed his hat-trick when miscuing a volley from Scott Vernon's cross.
However, the 24-year-old was not to be denied. He duly rattled up his third goal in the 81st minute by converting a measured pass from Dean Hammond at the far post.
All five of the U's summer signings enjoyed 45 minutes of action. Defenders Paul Reid and Matt Heath played in the first period, with Gillespie, Perkins and Matt Lockwood featuring in the second half.