Taylor back in action as McGoldrick strikes again
Town made it five wins from five in pre-season with victory over neighbours Colchester.
There was more good news for Blues with Paul Taylor returning to action for the first time in 10 months when he came on in the second-half as he stepped up his recovery from a foot injury that resulted in surgery.
Luke Chambers gave Town the lead on 25 minutes when he headed in from a corner, with David McGoldrick adding a second before the break with his fourth goal of the summer campaign.
Second-half substitute Daryl Murphy made it three 15 minutes from time, scoring from the penalty spot after he had been fouled.
Blues could have opened the scoring in the first minute, McGoldrick smashing a strike against the bar.
Anthony Wordsworth, appearing against his old club, sent a header just over then saw an effort deflected wide after McGoldrick had seen his shot spectacularly tipped over by Sam Walker.
The Colchester ‘keeper – who grew up a Town fan - like his opposite number, Scott Loach – was the far busier of the two in the first-half and had to be alert to keep out another McGoldrick strike.
Town were forced into a change just past the quarter hour, Cole Skuse receiving a knock when making a challenge and being replaced by Elliott Hewitt.
Wordsworth sent a free-kick wide as Town pressed for the opener but the home side carried a threat and Clinton Morrison got behind the Blues’ defence but saw his path to goal blocked by Tommy Smith’s challenge.
Wordsworth tested Walker from distance before Mick McCarthy’s side opened the scoring through Chambers’ header from a corner.
McGoldrick extended the lead seven minutes later with a snap shot that beat Walker into the bottom corner to register his fourth goal in successive pre-season games and take Town into the break with clear water between the teams.
Blues made two changes at the break, former Colchester ‘keeper Dean Gerken lining up against his old club, and Christophe Berra making his first appearance in Town colours after joining on Monday in a two year deal.
Berra was immediately in the action to cut out the danger from Drey Wright’s cross, the Scotland international in the right place soon after to clear from Andy Bond.
At the other end, Colchester had two former Town players in their back-line with David Wright, a second-half substitute, alongside Tom Eastman.
Taylor got the run-out he has craved for since the return to pre-season, entering the fray midway through the half with McGoldrick, who looked a threat throughout, making way.
Chambers cleared from Kem Izzet as Colchester looked to reduce the arrears but it was Town who struck again, Murphy converting from the spot after a pass from Wordsworth put the Irishman in on goal before Walker brought him down.
Blues finish the campaign with a trip to Notts County on Saturday looking for a perfect six before the Championship season gets underway at Reading on August3.
Town: Loach (Gerken 46), Veseli (Hammond 68), Cresswell (Mings 68), Chambers (October 79), Smith (Berra 46), Tabb (Carson 79), Skuse (Hewitt 15), Hyam (Berkane 79), Wordsworth (Lawrence 79), Nouble (Murphy 65), McGoldrick (Taylor 65).
TC gives some final instructions to the lads during the warm-up