COLCHESTER United travel to play League Two leaders Stockport County this afternoon, in Matty Etherington’s first game in permanent charge.

From likely line-ups to key men and the referee, all you need to know can be found below ahead of the game at Edgeley Park (kick-off 3pm).

Team news

Colchester boss Matty Etherington will be without top scorer Joe Taylor for today’s game.

The on-loan Luton Town striker is away on international duty with Wales under-21s, with Bradley Ihionvien and Tom Hopper both in the running to replace him in attack.


Goalkeeper Owen Goodman is available having been on standby for England under-20s and Fiacre Kelleher is pushing for a start after recovering from injury but Tom Dallison will be checked ahead of the game, having missed training this week due to a back problem.

Connor Hall, John Akinde, Owura Edwards, Nico Lawrence, Al-Amin Kazeem and Ellis Iandolo are all sidelined.

Predicted line-ups

Colchester: Goodman, Greenidge, Mitchell, Kelleher, Egbo, Read, McGeehan, Fevrier, Chilvers, Ihionvien, Tovide

Stockport County: Hinchliffe, Pye, Horsfall, Southam, Wright, Croasdale, Sarcevic, Wootton, Barry, Collar, Olaofe


Colchester head coach Matty Etherington:

“We’ve had the last five games and I’ve really enjoyed it, so when Robbie (Cowling) offered me the opportunity, I’d have been a fool to have turned it down.

“I genuinely think everything is here and set up to be successful, especially at this level.

“It’s not been the most successful in the last few seasons, I understand that but I do think the ingredients are there for this club to be successful.

“You may have heard that before but that’s just genuinely how I feel.

“I think I can help the club move on and be successful.”


Key battle

Mandela Egbo has been a regular starter in the Colchester defence since joining them from League One side Charlton Athletic at the end of the summer transfer window.

The U’s defender is set to come up against Stockport’s Isaac Olaofe, who has registered 11 goals and two assists in 17 games.


Last meeting

Colchester were beaten 1-0 at home the last time they played Stockport County in March, 2023.

Kyle Wootton scored the only goal of the game in the first half to secure the Hatters’ win, at the JobServe Community Stadium.


Andy Davies is the man in the middle today.

He has taken charge of seven games so far this season, showing 31 yellow cards and one red to date.


Colchester are 8/1 to claim victory today, according to Paddy Power. Stockport County are viewed at 3/10 for the win, with the draw 4/1.

League Two fixtures, today (3pm unless stated): Notts County v Bradford City (12.30pm), Accrington Stanley v Wrexham, Barrow v Crawley Town, Forest Green Rovers v Grimsby Town, Gillingham v Salford City, Harrogate Town v Swindon Town, Mansfield Town v Newport County, Stockport County v Colchester United, Sutton United v Tranmere Rovers.