Trio of trialists join U’s

Lloyd James, James Walker and Ben Coker all join Colchester on two-week trials.

THREE players have joined Colchester United on minimum two week trials today.

The most established of the three is versatile full-back Lloyd James, the 22-year-old having been recently released by Southampton after making over 80 appearances for the club.

Originally an attack-minded right-back, James was often deployed as a central-midfielder last season. He would appear to be an ideal like-for-like replacement for the out-going Phil Ifil and could also offer cover for the departed David Prutton and David Fox in the middle.

Meanwhile, striker James Walker also joins on trial after being released by Gillingham. The 22-year-old came through the ranks at Charlton and, after a string of loan spells, signed for Southend in 2008. He scored four goals in 37 appearances for the Shrimpers before joining Gillingham in February this year.

Walker made five appearances for the League One club in the second half of the season, but the Gills have decided not to offer him a new deal.

The third trialist is left-sided player Ben Coker, a 20-year-old who has just played a key role in Suffolk side Bury Town’s title winning season in the Zameretto League Division One Midlands (step four of non-league). He has already impressed for the U’s in an end-of-season reserve match against Norwich City and John Ward has decided to take another look.

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The trio will train with Colchester for a minimum of two weeks and, should they impress, could be used in some of the pre-season matches which follow.

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