U's boss critical of 'powder puff' play

COLCHESTER United boss Phil Parkinson praised his players for their endeavour, but criticised them for their powder-puff finishing in front of goal at Barnsley on Saturday.

COLCHESTER United boss Phil Parkinson praised his players for their endeavour, but criticised them for their powder-puff finishing in front of goal at Barnsley on Saturday, writes Carl Marston.

It was not the ideal anniversary present for Parkinson, who was celebrating the end of his third year in charge at Layer Road. A solitary goal from Brian Howard secured a 1-0 win for the Tykes.

“You can't miss as many chances as we did today, and still expect to get something out of the game,” rued Parkinson.

“We had the better scoring chances in the first half, and we should have been up at half-time. I reckon we also had seven clear-cut chances in the box in the second-half. We should have ended up scoring at least two or three goals.


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“I couldn't fault the lads for their effort, but converting your chances is such a key part of the game. We got ourselves in some very good positions, and yet nothing came of it.

“Today we were just not good enough where it mattered most. Mark Yeates had the beating of the full-back, but he couldn't hit the target. That was the story of our day,” added Parkinson.

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The U's, after a club record run of 10 straight victories, have now failed to win in their last four league and cup matches, although of course one of those was a 3-1 defeat at Premiership leaders Chelsea.

United have only mustered one point from a possible nine, having also lost at Huddersfield, who are now up to second spot, and only drawn at home to lowly Walsall.

Parkinson continued: “It's a bad result, but we're still up there. It's getting very tight.

“It's very close amongst the top six teams, and some of the mid-table teams are catching up as well. You get games like today. It was the same at Huddersfield (2-0 defeat, despite hitting the woodwork three times and having two goals disallowed). It is not quite going for us at the moment.

“We've got to come through this period, and I'm sure that we will do.

“Not scoring is not a major issue at the moment, because we have been scoring a lot of goals for most of the season. It's just that we can't afford to have too many games like today.

“Aidan (Davison) made some excellent saves, and was unlucky not to keep a clean-sheet. George (Elokobi) had a tough time at left-back. He got booked early on, which didn't help, but he'll learn from this.

“We were looking to our best players to come good in the box, but it didn't happen,” concluded Parkinson.

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