Date:Monday March 22 2010
Vital Colchester welcomes a new contributor, Coco, for his on-site debut as he gives us an interesting and in-depth look at the recent fortunes of Colchester and Brentford ahead of Tuesday evening`s showdown in League One...
Colchester United will always have an affiliation with Brentford after the thrilling 2005/6 campaign, which saw the U`s steal promotion on the last day of the season, with Brentford falling third by just three points. The following season of '06/07 took on a decidedly different complexion, with United stunning the football world by finishing 10th in English football`s second tier. Brentford, on the other hand, finished bottom of the League One table.
Since then a lot has changed, with the U`s dropping back into the third tier and Brentford getting promoted into it.
The two teams met once again at the start of December this season. On a bitterly cold night, a small crowd of 4,200 watched as Brentford stole all three points in a game which never really got started, with Charlie Macdonald scoring at the far post on 15 minutes. It was a frustrating night for the U`s, whose shots on target never really looked like sneaking in, but it was a priceless three points for the struggling Bees.
Three months and 21 days later, the league position hasn`t changed much for either side. Brentford are all but safe from the dreaded drop, consolidating their position in mid-table, while the U`s have fallen just two positions in to sixth. Despite that, the Essex side are no longer safe with their play-off hopes, with Huddersfield only two points behind.
The U`s are almost a full strength squad for the visit of Brentford on Tuesday night.
Kem Izzet makes his return after a two game suspension. The tenacious midfielder will be hoping he can restore a bit of fighting spirit as the two games he missed were consecutive away defeats at the hands of Carlisle and Walsall respectively.
Ashley Vincent fell foul to a dangerous tackle by Walsall`s Hughes which saw the player red-carded. However, it`s not thought that U`s winger will face another injury-induced spell on the sidelines.
Kayode Odejayi replaced him on the hour mark, only to be substituted four minutes later suffering from an ankle injury. The forward is likely to miss the Tuesday encounter.
Paul Reid remains unavailable with a back complaint.
Brentford are equally as strong with little or no serious injuries.
The side are boosted by Charlie Macdonald, the player that sent the U`s home with nothing at Griffin Park nearly four months ago, signing an extended contract after scoring the winner against doomed Stockport County on Saturday. The striker is their top scorer with 11 to his name, just seven off of his final total last season in League Two.
On the upcoming encounter, Macdonald said: 'We are going into it in high spirits. The squad is looking good at the moment, strong in quite a few areas.
'We will look at the situation in terms of bodies and I don't see why we can't go into the game in high spirits and get a good result.'
Midfielder Sam Wood looks set to drop into defence once again while Alan Bennet makes his return from a one match suspension. They will, however, be missing Ryan Dickson and Mark Phillips.
Despite Colchester`s poor run of form, they can still boast the second best home record in the league, conceding just only 14 goals, five of which came in the 5-0 embarrassment to Norwich City. Meanwhile, Brentford have won only four away from home, losing nine, and scoring only ten goals in the process and conceding 20.
I expect a close game with the likely winners being Colchester. Brentford are a good, organised team, but I think Colchester will be a bit too much for them. I`ll go for a narrow 1-0 win, but wouldn`t be surprised if the Bees stole a point.
So what do you think?
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Date:Monday March 22 2010
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