THE afternoon started as it finished for Colchester United at Moor Lane; with their players, coaches and supporters joining together as a United force.

At the end of a tumultuous and difficult few days in the history of the U's, it was fitting that Wayne Brown and his players, along with his coaching team and other staff, should celebrate their splendid win at Salford City with their long-suffering fans.

Prior to taking charge of his first game of Colchester in his third interim spell at the club, Brown had made a specific point of thanking the U's fans who had made the long trip up to the North West to back their team.

The whole squad, along with the coaching team, made sure they acknowledged their travelling fans prior to kick-off.

It meant a lot and further, it was a sign of respect to those supporters who have been through so much over the past couple of years, both on and off the field.

There was even a team huddle prior to kick-off, something that has not been seen from a Colchester team for quite some time.

By the end of the game, those same players and staff had made their way over to the away end to celebrate with them, following a hugely impressive victory.


This was such an enterprising performance from the U's, full of tempo and vitality from start to finish.

Some of the positive elements of the Salford display had been seen in Colchester's 3-2 defeat at Sutton United a few days earlier, which ultimately proved to be Hayden Mullins' final game in charge.

But not only did the U's produce a showing against Salford that was consistently good from start to finish; they also backed it up with the desire and commitment needed to pick up points away from home and one that deservedly produced a clean sheet.

Luke Chambers and Myles Kenlock's first-half strikes were just reward for Colchester, who had gone close on several occasions prior to that including Cole Skuse's effort that rattled a post.

And in the second half, the U's produced a professional performance where they defended solidly as a team and still posed a threat in attack, something borne out by Corie Andrews' late third goal.

Having had limited time to work with the squad prior to the Salford game, Brown and his coaching team deserve huge credit for masterminding such a fine team performance.


Colchester looked a far cry from the side that had gone seven league games without a win and had not picked up an away league victory since winning 3-2 at Barrow, last September.

“I think it’s easy for people to get into that mindset when you haven’t won in eight games to come and shut up shop and get what you can," said Brown.

“But I think if we did do that, we were sitting ducks and it’s important that we took the game to them in the way we wanted to take the game to them.

“We had two real good chances before scoring and I believe we should have also have a penalty and it would have been really easy for the team to go under but we had to keep believing and credit to the lads.

“They showed character in the group; they kept going and kept believing which was the biggest thing and we kept creating.

“We told them a few non-negotiables about the first balls and the second balls and we knew it was going to be a direct game, from Salford because that’s the way they’ve gone of late and they didn’t disappoint us but I thought we handled it very, very well.”

Colchester are now six points above the League Two relegation zone, having ended a miserable run of results in style.

It was without doubt a sweet feeling to see the U's claim three points on the road in such dominant fashion.

It has not happened too often over the past couple of seasons and their players and staff deserved to enjoy it, over the weekend.

But today as they report back to the Florence Park training ground, their focus will immediately switch to their next challenge, a home game against promotion-chasing Swindon Town, this Saturday.

As the words emblazoned on top of the stands at Moor Lane read, Success Starts Here.