When U's bosses blew their tops

COLCHESTER United boss Geraint Williams was an angry man after his side's 2-1 home defeat at the hands of Bristol City last weekend.The result left the U's floundering in the relegation zone.

COLCHESTER United boss Geraint Williams was an angry man after his side's 2-1 home defeat at the hands of Bristol City last weekend.

The result left the U's floundering in the relegation zone. He referred to is as the 'most annoyed' he had felt after a game for a very long time. Colchester correspondent CARL MARSTON recalls 10 of the most famous outbursts from U's managers since the Essex club returned to the Football League in 1992.

1 STEVE WIGNALL (2-0 defeat at Gravesend & Northfleet on November 13, 1995)

Boss Wignall accused his players of being “cowards” after watching his side humiliated at Beazer League Premier Division opposition. The visitors did not even force Fleet keeper Lee Turner into a serious save in the whole 90 minutes.


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“Morally, we were cowards. I just didn't understand what was happening. We bottled out and we can have no excuses. We just caved in and couldn't cope with the pressure. We showed virtually no passion and very little composure,” rued Wignall.

Jimmy Jackson, who drove tractors for a living, scored the first and ex-Ipswich youth teamer Peter Mortley netted the other.

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2 ROY MCDONOUGH (4-3 home defeat by Sutton United on November 13, 1993)

THE U's were booted out of the FA Cup at the first hurdle by Diadora League visitors Sutton, undone by Tottenham reject Ollie Morah's 88th-minute winner.

McDonough announced: “It is unthinkable that we can score three goals at home against poor opposition, and yet still not get a result. Twice we got ourselves out of jail, pulling back to 2-2 and 3-3, but their fourth goal was frightening to watch. There was hardly a defender in sight. Everyone is devastated.”

3 STEVE WIGNALL (3-1 defeat at Plymouth on May 15, 1996)

PROMOTION dreams were shattered as the U's lost in the Division Three play-off semi-finals at Home Park, going out 3-2 on aggregate. Wignall was not happy with some of the underhand tactics of Neil Warnock's side, not least when they refused to give possession back to the U's near the end, after the visitors had kicked the ball out of play so that a Plymouth player could receive some treatment.

“I have never seen that happen before and the club should put a stop to this sort of behaviour,” insisted Wignall. “The home fans were hostile and, if we had sneaked through, there would probably have been a riot.”

4 PHIL PARKINSON (1-0 defeat at Oldham on March 11, 2006)

A FRUSTRATED Parkinson kicked the advertising hoardings in despair before talking to the press at Boundary Park. He had just seen his side concede an injury-time winner to Oldham's Richard Butcher.

“It's been a bad month, in fact a terrible last month. We have set such very high standards this season, and we're now struggling to maintain them. The lads are feeling very down, because it's just not going for us,” said an emotional Parkinson.

The U's had lost six and drawn one of their last seven matches, although they recovered to win promotion that season.

5 GERAINT WILLIAMS (2-1 home defeat by Bristol City on February 23, 2008)

THE U's five-match unbeaten run ended last weekend. Having taken the lead through Clive Platt's 50th-minute goal, they then subsided to defeat by conceding twice in a six-minute spell to Dele Adebola and Michael McIndoe.

“I'm very, very annoyed. In fact, that's the most annoyed I've been at this club for a very long time,” said Williams. “We seemed to freeze after scoring the goal. We stopped being positive, and basically shot ourselves in the foot.”

6 STEVE WHITTON (5-1 defeat at Yeovil Town on November 18, 2000)

MANAGER Whitton did not mince his words after the U's leaked five second-half goals to bow out of the FA Cup at non-league Yeovil.

“We didn't do anything that professional footballers should do in the second period. We didn't defend and we were beaten by the better team. We totally lacked effort, passion and desire in the second-half. We should all be embarrassed by this sort of performance. I know that I am,” blasted Whitton.

Warren Patmore (two), Barrington Belgrave, Terry Skiverton and Paul Way scored for the Glovers. Karl Duguid replied for the U's.

7 PHIL PARKINSON (3-0 home defeat to Southend on March 4, 2006)

THE U's lost ground in the promotion race after suffering a heavy Layer Road defeat at the hands of leaders Southend, which completed a league double for the Shrimpers. They conceded all three goals inside the first half-hour.

“We were just not good enough. It was a bad day, to be three goals down at home to our local rivals at half-time. It might be that the players have started to believe in their own publicity since the FA Cup run (a trip to Chelsea). We have enjoyed a lot of praise this season, but now we're going to get some stick, and rightly so.”

Freddy Eastwood, Kevin Maher and Che Wilson did the damage with early goals.

8 STEVE WIGNALL (4-1 defeat at Bedlington Terriers on November 14, 1998)

THERE was another embarrassing FA Cup defeat at the hands of Bedlington, on a muddy Northumberland pitch, that ensured the U's a “good” slot on BBC's “Match of the Day” that evening!

Wignall admitted: “I have to be strong outwardly, but inwardly I'm hurting very badly. I just don't know which way to turn. The players' pride has been hurt.”

Martin Pike, John Milner (two), Mickey Cross scored for the Northern League Division One hosts. Tony Adcock netted a late consolation.

9 ROY MCDONOUGH (7-3 defeat at Darlington on November 2, 1993)

THE joke was on the U's as they crashed to a humiliating defeat at basement dwellers Darlington, who had not won in 13 league matches.

McDonough insisted: “It was a shambles. But my squad is wafer-thin, even without injuries, so it's reaching desperate proportions. My hands are tied. At 3-1 down there was no point in sitting back. We were just too cavalier.”

10 PHIL PARKINSON (4-0 defeat at Rushden & Diamonds on November 22, 2003)

CRAIG Fagan was sent off for violent conduct as the U's suffered a promotion setback at Nene Park.

Parkinson admitted: “Everything that could go wrong, did go wrong. It was not a good day. I had already spoken to Craig (Fagan) about discipline this season, especially getting silly bookings. The referee frustrated me, but then they always do when we are getting beaten. The result was a kick in the teeth.”

Fagan was dismissed for retaliating against Diamonds defender John Dempster.

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