U’s have been scouting for goals

COLCHESTER United have been scouting for goals this week.

The permanent transfer window may have shut on Tuesday, but Football League clubs will be able to make ‘emergency’ loan signings as of next Tuesday.

And U’s boss John Ward has revealed that he has sent staff members to eight Premier league reserve team matches over the last week.

The target is likely to be a striker after Colchester lost four players in that position over summer (Kevin Lisbie, Clive Platt, Scott Vernon and Joel Thomas) and replaced them with just one in the form of Reading loanee David Mooney.

Ward admitted at the time of the latter’s arrival that he would consider bringing in another forward and that search could now be intensified following the news that Steven Gillespie is making slow progress following his pre-season ankle injury.

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“We recruited early on in pre-season and I was happy to do that rather than making any last ditch moves,” said Ward, who has brought in Mooney, Andy Bond, Brian Wilson, Lloyd James, Ben Coker and Carl Pentney so far and seen 12 players exit the club either permanently or following loan deals.

“Also, I didn’t have anyone disappear so for me it was good that it was a quiet (transfer deadline) day. There was no interest in any of my players at all so I’m quite happy.”

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He added: “I inherited a good squad of players and I think I’ve added to that quite well within the confines of what the club is trying to do.

“The loan window opens again next week though so that is probably an area we might explore more than permanent deals.

“I’ve got people working very hard on things and this week we sent scouts to eight Premier League reserve games – particularly the northern clubs.

“I’ll be keeping a close eye on the 25-man squad situation because maybe there will be one or two senior players that become available.

“We’ve got to look carefully at one, what we can afford; two, people we think can make us better; and three the human factor because I don’t want players coming in that will cause the squad problems.”

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