U's duo pushing for first-team starts

JOHN White and Chris Iwelumo are both pushing for first-team starts after enjoying 45 minutes of action for Colchester United Reserves yesterday.The duo have been on the bench for the U's first three fixtures of the campaign, due to pre-seasons disrupted by injury.

By Carl Marston

JOHN White and Chris Iwelumo are both pushing for first-team starts after enjoying 45 minutes of action for Colchester United Reserves yesterday.

The duo have been on the bench for the U's first three fixtures of the campaign, due to pre-seasons disrupted by injury. But they could both be in line for a start at West Brom on Saturday.

United have lost their first three games in the Championship, and new manager Geraint Williams has been trying unsuccessfully all week to bring in some new signings.

However, the return of White and Iwelumo could freshen up the team for what promises to be a stern test at The Hawthorns.

“George (Elokobi) is suspended for this weekend, so of course John (White) is pushing for a first-team start, as is Chris (Iwelumo). Both got another 45 minutes under their belt for the reserves,” confirmed Williams last night. “People will not expect us to do much at West Brom. It is a similar scenario to when we went to Birmingham (2-1 defeat) on the opening day of the season. But our own expectations are higher.

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“My ears are sore with all the phone calls that I've been making this week. We have been trying to bring in some new faces, but we came into this late in the day as opposed to most other clubs. The pool of players is getting smaller.”

Full-back White and striker Iwelumo both played the first 45 minutes of yesterday afternoon's Pontins Combination match against Southend United's second string.

Teenage striker Jamie Guy netted the 38th-minute winner in a 1-0 success at Layer Road. Craig Hughes had a shot blocked but Robbie King laid the rebound into the path of Guy, who made no mistake by firing home via a post.

Full-back Lawrie Wilson, who signed for the club last week after playing in several pre-season friendlies, played the whole match. Centre-half Pat Baldwin came through an hour yesterday.

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