Writer: Colchester Dan
Date:Saturday February 16 2013
The U's slumped to a 3-0 defeat at promotion-chasing Sheffield United this afternoon as they struggled to find a way back into the game following an early penalty for the Blades.
In a game that always looked like a tough challenge, the U's sought hope from the Blades' recent home form having struggled for points at Bramall Lane in recent weeks.
However, following back-to-back wins for the Yorkshire side on their travels at Bury at Shrewsbury, they continued that form this afternoon in comfortably dispatching the U's.
It was a nightmare start for Joe Dunne's men as Josh Thompson was penalised within five minutes for bringing down BARRY ROBSON inside the U's eighteen-yard box, the Scottish midfielder dusting himself down to knock the resulting penalty kick beyond Sam Walker in the U's goal.
Despite going behind to an early goal the U's didn't capitulate and, if anything, continued to press and create some of the better chances of the first half, Freddie Sears failing to capitalise on a number of half chances as the ex-West Ham man continued his good form of recent weeks.
Josh Thompson also saw an effort go just over the bar as he pressed forward from set pieces, but it was the hosts who finished the first half on top in symmetry to the opening ten minutes, with Michael Doyle crashing a long-range effort onto the post, sending warning signs to Joe Dunne's men that the Blades had more to give.
In contrast to a fairly promising first half, the second half saw the U's fail to perform and there was a notable lack of threat in the Sheffield United area.
A further blow was suffered with twenty minutes to go, as KEVIN McDONALD crashed home a long-range strike to all but seal the three points for the hosts, having been given ample space in the middle of the park to push forward towards the visiting box.
It ended the U's hopes and the game began to draw to a close with increasing pressure from the home side, and that pressure told in stoppage time as DAVE KITSON finished the game with a third for the Blades, finishing with ease from close range to seal a miserable away day for Joe Dunne's men.
It takes the U's into a home double-header with Tranmere and Yeovil in the next ten days, with four points seemingly a must from two difficult fixtures.
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Date:Saturday February 16 2013
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