No letting up now - U's boss

COLCHESTER United have reached the lofty heights of fourth spot, but manager Phil Parkinson is still not satisfied.The U's have made relentless progress up the League One table over the last three months, notching their latest success over relegation-haunted MK Dons on Saturday.

By Carl Marston

COLCHESTER United have reached the lofty heights of fourth spot, but manager Phil Parkinson is still not satisfied.

The U's have made relentless progress up the League One table over the last three months, notching their latest success over relegation-haunted MK Dons on Saturday.

“We may have established ourselves in the top six, but we mustn't sit back now. We must keep on moving upwards,” said Parkinson. The U's are now just three points adrift of second-placed Brentford.

“We are aiming high. There is a lot of belief in the squad, and several of the teams around us have dropped points this weekend.

“We are on a fantastic run. We have won nine of our last 10 games, but today we had to grind out a performance.

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“Conditions were very difficult. It was very windy, but we got the break with Neil Danns' goal in the first half, and conditions favoured us in the second-half. We had three or four chances to kill off the game, and I just felt that when they were reduced to 10 men, we took our foot off the pedal.

“I feared that it might be one of those games when we got caught out with a late goal, but fortunately we weren't made to pay.

“I've been a little critical of the lads. We seemed to sit back and just wait for it to happen.

“Thankfully, our back four were again solid, as was Aidan (Davison),” added Parkinson.

Chris Iwelumo tucked home an injury-time penalty to finally put the U's out of sight, after Danns had broken the deadlock early on in the 13th minute. Parkinson gave a special mention to midfielder Danns. He said: “I thought Neil was excellent all afternoon.

“He was the driving force through the midfield. He got his goal, and gave us the impetus. This was not our best team performance. It was scrappy at times, but it's great to be going into the Christmas period in the top six,” concluded Parkinson.

His opposite number Danny Wilson had no qualms about referee Paul Melin's decision to send off his skipper Ben Chorley for foul and abusive language just after the hour mark.

Dons boss Wilson admitted: “I have no complaints about the sending off. He made a gesture towards the crowd, and so will be disciplined by the club.

“We just have to keep believing in ourselves. It was very poor defending for their first goal, but I thought we showed a lot of spirit in the second-half, especially after going down to 10 men.”

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