Symons: 'I'd much prefer a 1-0'

COLCHESTER United caretaker manager Kit Symons needs a few wins to bolster his chances of securing the job full-time, but he would prefer not to endure any more 4-3 scorelines!

Carl Marston

COLCHESTER United caretaker manager Kit Symons needs a few wins to bolster his chances of securing the job full-time, but he would prefer not to endure any more 4-3 scorelines!

Symons' first match in temporary charge, following Geraint Williams' departure by mutual consent, featured a helter-skelter 4-3 victory at Tranmere Rovers.

Tonight he samples his first home game at the helm - and a more conventional 1-0 win would be most welcome.

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“I don't want to keep winning games 4-3, because my heart won't take it,” admitted Symons last night.

“It was an outstanding performance at Tranmere. We owed this to a few people. It was an amazing game, especially as Joe (Dunne) and I changed the shape and formation of the team during the week, which is not an easy thing to do in so short a time.

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“Joe put together a couple of good training sessions. And to score an early goal in the manner that we did really pleased us, because that was what we had been working on - to attack with freedom. The penny must have dropped.

“The ball started with Deano (keeper Dean Gerken) and there were nine or 10 passes, during which Tranmere didn't touch the ball, leading to our goal (scored by David Perkins). That must go down as the goal-of-the-season.

“Before the match, I had told the players to play with their heads and their hearts, in equal measure. If it had stayed at 4-1, then I would not have known whether they had played with their hearts, but the fact that Tranmere came back from 4-1 to 4-3 meant that they had to do just that.

“Tranmere are a big, physical side, and they put balls into the box, but I never once felt that we would concede again,” added Symons.

Leicester City will overhaul leaders Oldham and move to the top of League One, if they can win this evening. Conversely, the U's are gunning for their first ever win at their new Community Stadium, following two draws and a defeat.

The last home game had ended in a highly-charged atmosphere, with boos and jeers echoing around the stadium following a 3-0 defeat at the hands of MK Dons. Former boss Williams effectively lost his job as a result.

Symons continued: “Most of our fans won't have seen the performance at Tranmere, but hopefully they will have heard about it from those that did, about the way we played.

“We want to give our home fans something to cheer about, and obviously for me to stand a chance of getting the manager's job full-time, I need to get some results.

“I changed the formation at Tranmere, but it's not really about formations. As I told the players at our last meeting - 'it's not the plan, but the man in the plan.'

“Leicester have only conceded three goals in the league this season. They are well-organised, but I believe they are beatable,” added Symons.

Even though they are at home, Symons might stick with the same team and same system, which basically varies from 4-5-1 to 4-3-3. It certainly proved to be a very fluid formation at Prenton Park.

Striker Steven Gillespie serves the third and last of his three-match suspension, while left-back Matt Lockwood remains sidelined through injury. Coventry City loanee, Gary Borrowdale, should make his home debut at left-back.

Meanwhile, Leicester boss Nigel Pearson is eager to play down the prospect of going top of the table.

Pearson insisted: “We have an opportunity to go top, but we can't get carried away with things like that. It's all about where we are at the end of the season.

“Colchester have a change of manager and that in itself can have an effect on the game.”

Leicester were favourites for automatic promotion with most bookmakers at the start of the season, along with Leeds United, and so far they have lived up to that billing.

Since suffering relegation from the Championship last term, under former manager Ian Holloway, the Foxes have won eight of their 11 fixtures. Their only two defeats have come at Fulham (3-2) in the Carling Cup, and at home to Millwall (1-0) in the league.

They only managed 42 goals in 46 league games last season, but they have found scoring an easier business in League One. Leading scorer Matty Fraytt has already bagged seven goals (six in the league), while target-man Steve Howard and Lloyd Dyer have contributed three apiece.

Experienced strikers DJ Campbell (stomach bug) and Paul Dickov (back problem) missed Saturday's 1-0 home win over Hartlepool, but both could return to the fold this evening.


COLCHESTER UNITED: Gerken, White, Reid, Heath, Borrowdale, Yeates, Izzet, Hammond, Perkins, Jackson, Platt, Vernon, Wordsworth, Elito, Coyne, Wasiu, Ifil and Cousins.

LEICESTER CITY: Martin, Gilbert, Tunchev, Hobbs, Powell, Adams, Oakley, A King, Dyer, Howard, Fraytt, Campbell, Dickov, Morrison, Wesolowski, Berner, C King and Henderson

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