Wordsworth grabs leveller

TEENAGER Anthony Wordsworth netted his first senior goal to earn Colchester United a 1-1 draw at Cambridge in last night's pre-season friendly.Midfielder Wordsworth, a first year professional, tucked home George Elokobi's cross with a sweet half-volley in the 81st minute.

By Carl Marston

TEENAGER Anthony Wordsworth netted his first senior goal to earn Colchester United a 1-1 draw at Cambridge in last night's pre-season friendly.

Midfielder Wordsworth, a first year professional, tucked home George Elokobi's cross with a sweet half-volley in the 81st minute.

This cancelled out a cracking early strike from Lee Boylan, who fired hosts Cambridge ahead in the ninth minute. He looks sure to score a hat-ful of goals in the Blue Square Premier this season.


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Boylan, who scored a remarkable 170 goals in five seasons at Canvey Island, moved to the Abbey Stadium from Grays Athletic in May. Keeper Dean Gerken was powerless to prevent Boylan's 20-yarder from flying into the net.

Ex-Charlton striker Kevin Lisbie and Hungarian international centre-half Bela Balogh were given run-outs as triallists. They both played for just over an hour.

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The only absentees were the injured duo of Teddy Sheringham (calf problem) and Kevin Watson (sore Achilles tendon). Mark Yeates played a part after missing the opener at Heybridge with a thigh strain.

There was a minute's silence before kick-off to remember Dave Simmons, David Preece and Doug Millard. Centre-forward Simmons played both for Colchester (1971-73) and Cambridge (1973-76). He died last month at the age of 58.

Preece, a former player and assistant manager at Cambridge, recently died after a short illness at the age of 44, while long-time Cambridge supporter and steward Millard passed away at the age of 82.

Colchester striker Clive Platt had excellent chances to score either side of Boylan's stunning opener. On three minutes, Platt latched onto Kem Izzet's through ball and was only thwarted by an instinctive save from Danny Potter, with Kevin McLeod just failing to slide home the rebound from close-in.

Former MK Dons target-man Platt should really have cancelled out Boylan's goal in the ninth minute. Again he was denied by the acrobatics of Potter, from point blank range, after Izzet had flicked on McLeod's cross.

Ipswich-born Potter, who had a spell at Layer Road without ever making a first team appearance for the U's, was in the action again when parrying triallist Lisbie's angled shot at the near post.

After the break, Colchester forced the issue and McLeod's dipping half-volley was palmed around the post by Potter in the 48th minute. Shortly afterwards and Lisbie sprung the offside trap to control John White's cross, only for Potter to block.

Geraint Williams introduced his new-look second-half team in two waves. He changed his keeper and back-four in the 62nd minute, and two minutes later made a further six substitutions across the midfield and up front.

Cambridge boss Jimmy Quinn employed a more gradual approach with his changes. Right-back Michael Morrison, one of the few players to survive the full 90 minutes, nearly added a second with a strong run and low drive that substitute keeper Mark Cousins saved down on his haunches.

Wordsworth grabbed the equaliser in the 81st minute, firing home in some style from George Elokobi's cross, delivered from the left-edge of the penalty area.

Colchester are back in action at Chelmsford City this evening, and they play their first home game against a Liverpool XI on Saturday.

The teams

CAMBRIDGE UNITED: Potter (sub McShane, 69) Morrison, Reed, Gleeson (sub Coulson, 56), Hoyte (sub Peters, 56), Albrighton (sub Hyem, 56), Convery (sub Pitt, 65), Wolleaston (sub Quinton, 50) Ward (sub Rendell, 56), Boylan (sub Collins, 80), Smith.

COLCHESTER UNITED: Gerken, White, Connolly, Balogh, Granville, Duguid, Izzet, Jackson, McLeod, Lisbie, Platt. Second-half substitutes: Cousins, Devaux, Richards, Baldwin and Elokobi (all 62 mins), Elito, Guttridge, Wordsworth, Yeates, Guy and Webb (all 64 mins).

Referee: Mr Gary Lewis

Attendance: 1,369

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