It is an image that was a familiar one at Layer Road in the nineties.

Colchester United favourite Tony English shadows an opponent during his side’s 2-1 home defeat at the hands of Darlington in April, 1994.

Along with Mark Kinsella, long-serving English was an ever present for the U’s that season and was a stalwart for the club, throughout his time there.

Kinsella’s goal proved only a consolation against the Quakers, meaning a third straight loss for the U’s in Endsleigh League division three.

It also meant a seventh successive home game without a win for Roy McDonough’s side, in a season which featured disappointment over an apparent lack of action over plans to move to a new stadium.

Colchester’s second season back in the league following their non-league double of 1992 has started pretty well.

They lost only two of their opening eight league games, a run which featured four wins against Lincoln City, Northampton Town, old foes Wycombe Wanderers and Bury.

New signing Steve Brown proved particularly productive in the first few weeks of the season, with a hat-trick scored in the 4-1 thrashing of Bury the main highlight.

The 5-2 triumph at newly-promoted Wycombe, who Colchester went head to head with in the Conference in the 1991-92 campaign, was a particularly memorable game, especially given the history between the two clubs.

Goals from Brown, McDonough, Kinsella, Steve McGavin and Martin Grainger giving them a thumping win at Adams Park.

Colchester were full of goals in the opening weeks of the 1993-94 campaign, hitting 62 in a sequence of 12 matches.

However, after a promising start the U’s challenge started to wobble.

It was not helped by the departure of McGavin at the turn of the calendar year.

By the time Colchester faced Darlington at Layer Road, they were entrenched in the bottom half of the table and looking nervously over their shoulders at the drop zone.

However, back-to-back wins over Walsall and Doncaster in the final weeks of the campaign helped the U’s finish 17th in the table and sealed their place in division three for another season.

Kinsella was named Colchester’s player of the year, while Brown finished their top scorer with 13 goals.