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Match Reports


25 July 2017

Garner on target again as Town edge local honours

Joe Garner maintained his good run of pre-season form in front of goal with a sixth strike of the summer.

The June arrival from Rangers headed home early in the second-half as Town edged the friendly across the Essex border.

The win makes it four out of five for Town in the July fixtures with Charlton to come on Saturday before the Championship show gets underway on August 5.

Dean Gerken was forced into the first save of the game, diving full length to beat out Sean Murray’s free-kick from the edge of the box in front of a 2000 strong travelling Blue Army.

Town responded with an excellent Adam McDonnell pass releasing Ben Morris who looked in on goal until former Blue, Tom Eastman, ended the danger with a superb challenge inside the box.

Blues were inches away from an opener soon after, Danny Rowe hit the underside of the bar from 40 yards after Sam Walker had cleared from outside his box. The rebound fell to Conor

McKendry but his header was comfortably dealt with by the retreating Colchester ‘keeper.

Murray again tested Gerken with a free-kick from 25 yards, Eastman then twice going close at the other end - first with a header from a corner, then with a snapshot over the bar from close range.

McKendry pulled his shot wide after cutting inside from the right, David McGoldrick seeing an effort deflected for a corner after losing his marker with ease as the first-half came to an end goalless.

One of three substitutes at half-time for Town, Bersant Celina, had the away fans on their feet in the first minutes of the second-half, forcing a save from Walker.

On 57 minutes, Town were ahead. Myles Kenlock set the ball up from the left and Garner towered above the defence to head home from eight yards.

Sammie Szmodics was inches away from levelling the scores for Colchester on the hour before Town made wholesale changes with Freddie Sears one of the substitutes introduced - the striker returning to his former club.

Luke Chambers diverted the ball away from danger as Colchester threatened again while at the other end, Walker saved well from Sears after Flynn Downes had set him up following a driving run in the last action of a competitive 90 minutes.

Town: Gerken, Fowler (Chambers 46), Kenlock (Knudsen 59), Iorfa (Spence 59), Webster (Smith 59), McDonnell (Ward 59), Rowe (Bru 59), Nydam (Downes 59), Morris (Garner 46), McGoldrick (Sears 59), McKendry (Celina 46).

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