MATT Bloomfield praised his Colchester United players after they completed a spirited comeback to beat Charlton Athletic 2-1, in the Papa Johns Trophy.

Late goals from John Akinde and Tom Eastman cancelled out Albie Morgan's first-half opener and secured the U's victory over the Addicks in their second Group A clash, at the JobServe Community Stadium.

It helped secure Bloomfield a first win as Colchester boss, in his first home game in charge following his appointment as Wayne Brown's successor last week.

And after seeing his side bounce back well in the second half against their League One opponents, the newly-installed U's boss was naturally pleased with his players' efforts.

Bloomfield said: "I'm proud to have my first win as Colchester United head coach.

"I'm so proud of the boys and their endeavour and energy and the graft they put in.

"The togetherness of the team showed.

"I told the boys they're going to get so sick of my preaching about camaraderie, team spirit and hard work and sticking together.

"I thought in the second half they did it and showed some good quality in that final third and I thought we deserved it.

"Sam came up with a great save and to win games of football, you do need a little bit of luck.

"We didn't get that luck on Saturday (at AFC Wimbledon) - we went from 1-0 up to 2-1 down and we got a little bit of luck with the penalty save tonight.

"But we gave the boys some messages at half-time and one thing I'll give these boys so far - they'll take messages on and try and implement them.

"Look, it's just a nice start more than anything - it's the first win on the board and I hope that we can add to that, on Saturday."

Bloomfield made ten changes to his Colchester starting line-up, as he familiarises himself with the squad he has inherited.

Charlton also made ten changes but looked a strong outfit in the first half, before the U's roared back.

"I think if you look at their starting XI, it's not far off a play-off, mid-table team in League One," said Bloomfield.

"That's a very good team that they've got.

"They need a little bit of respect and we're coming into the game off the back of not a great run.

"I want to press teams but sometimes, I think you have to see the game that's in front of you.

"Once the first goal went in, we decided that actually, what we need to do is keep the units intact.

"The distances between the units were getting stretched, so we kept the units intact to give ourselves a base from which to press from.

"Of course, they had the majority of the ball and I totally understand that.

"They've got some good rotation, good footballers and we had to find the way to win the game, which we did.

"There were positive messages from the sideline.

"There's going to be a time where people will be told that things aren't quite right and I'm more than willing to do that.

"I did that at times tonight during the game and at half-time but if you can fill this place with positivity and get everyone together moving forward, the boys seemed to grow during that second half.

"Every minute that went on, it looked like they were more and more likely to go and create something.

"I thought we had some good chances and it wasn't just the two goals.

"Big John Akinde came on and made a difference and I thought Frank Nouble was fantastic.

"Marley Miranda I think has got a big future in front of him if he keeps his feet on the ground and keeps working hard.

"As a whole team, I just thought the boys were together.

"I just said thank you to the subs and the lads that weren't involved tonight.

"I just feel a togetherness amongst the group; they're desperate to do well and I really hope this is the first win of many."