BEN Garner admits his Colchester United team ‘shot themselves in the foot’ after they relinquished a lead to lose 2-1 at home to Harrogate Town this afternoon.

The U’s looked like they were heading for a welcome win after Chay Cooper put them ahead with a delightful goal, just after the hour mark at the JobServe Community Stadium.

But Matt Daly equalised for Harrogate less than three minutes later, before substitute Sam Folarin curled in the visitors’ winner in the 80th minute.

READ MORE: Colchester 1 Harrogate 2 - match report as U's lose at home

The defeat was Colchester’s fourth in succession in League Two and leaves them in the relegation zone.

U's boss Garner said: “We had complete control of the game and went 1-0 up when it was hard to break them down and we get that brilliant goal and they hadn’t had a shot on target, up until that point in the game.

“But for the five to ten minutes after that, we’re intent on making it a basketball game.


“They had two shots on target and both go in.

“We’ve got this horrible habit of shooting ourselves in the foot at the moment, even when we’re much the better side and in complete control of the game.

“We shouldn’t have been vulnerable after we scored.

“They hadn’t done anything up until then and hadn’t had a shot on target.

“If anything, you go 1-0 up and it makes you even more solid but the goals we conceded were poor.

READ MORE: Colchester United v Harrogate Town - as it happened

“We go to ground on the halfway line and we shouldn’t and then lose the challenge.

“Then for the second goal, he (Folarin) has four touches before he gets the shot off.

“Harrogate frustrate, they sit, they slow the game, they look to break.

“What we ideally needed today was a nice slick playing surface but it was anything but.

“The pitch was poor today and that made the game so much harder.


“But we got 1-0 up and we’d done the hard work, so to then concede the two goals is really, really disappointing.

“If you look at Harrogate’s games and the way they play, they don’t have many shots or opportunities; we’ve had 20 shots on goal today.

“There’s no way we should lose that game but we’ve managed to do it.”

Cooper marked his first-ever EFL start with a fine goal, curling in from the edge of the area from Cameron McGeehan’s pass.

Garner added: “It was a wonderful goal – it was great technique.

“Chay did great and there were a lot of good performances out there today.”