COLCHESTER United made the trip up North to play a Stockport County side who were not only setting the pace as the league leaders but also chasing a 12th league win in a row.

With all this in mind, every U's fan making the long journey to Greater Manchester knew that it would be a big ask to get anything from the game.

Goals either side of the break gave the hosts all three points and the inevitable long trip back to Essex for the Colchester faithful.

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While in the history books this will show as a standard home win for the Hatters, it was not actually the case, if you take a deeper look into the game.

Over the 90 minutes, we were not totally outplayed and had we been more clinical in front of goal, it could well have been a different outcome.

It was us that had the game's first clearcut chance and had Tovide's backheel settled in the back of the net, rather than rebounding back off the bar, at 1-0 it is suddenly a different game with the home side on the back foot.


But alas it was not to be and two moments of dropped concentration saw Stockport pounce and take full advantage.

I am not going to single out any player who was at fault, but one of the worrying defensive issues we are having is concentration throughout the whole game.

The fact their opener was scored in the 44th minute and the second in the 46th hints at players slightly dropping off as half-time approaches and then not being at it from the off, in the second half.

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We cannot be allowing these things to happen at this level, or we will be punished – as shown Saturday – and all the other hard work is all wasted.

The stats actually gave us more shots on target, five to their four and this highlights just how much we did miss that finishing touch.

With Joe Taylor away on international duty, the reliance on him to provide that finish was there for all to see.

We have injury issues and when certain key players are back, the selection will be more competitive, which will hopefully raise the level on all on the pitch.


While from a section of the fanbase there is criticism that the performances have not been great under Etherington, we are in a results business.

With points on the board during his interim spell, it was no surprise when he got the job on a permanent basis.

The challenge he now has is to take the positives from the weekend, look to the work on areas this week to put them all together and bounce back when Barrow make the long trip down to North Essex on the weekend.

This will be another stern test with them sixth in the league, picking up a 1-0 home win against Crawley in their last game.

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The debate of performance offset with results will continue until we can achieve the ideal situation where we are playing well and winning games.

But personally, I’d take a poor 1-0 win and three points over a pretty draw or loss any day of the week.

It’s a tough league and we need to grind out results anyway we can.

With results will come confidence and with confidence will come improved style of play.

Until then, let's just worry about getting back to winning ways and carry on getting the points to see us settled mid-table and then add the nicer parts to the game. Up the U’s.