Colchester United boss Joe Dunne was left to rue his side's poor defending after they started the new year on a losing note.

The U's were beaten 3-0 by play-off-chasing Crawley Town at the Broadfield Stadium, after goals from Mark Connolly, Billy Clarke and Nicky Adams gave the Red Devils a big win.

It was Colchester's seventh successive defeat and leaves them two points above the relegation zone in League One.

Dunne said: “We’ve started the year the way that we ended the last one, which is not what we wanted to do.

“I can take a tape recorder into the dressing room and just press play and it would just be a case of saying the same things over and over again.

“They didn’t have to work hard for their goals and unfortunately, that’s been symptomatic of our season so far.

“We have to keep pushing though and I thought that we did a lot of good things."

For a full match report, pictures and more reaction to the U's defeat at Crawley, see Wednesday's Gazette.