SAMMIE Szmodics scored for the second successive match as Colchester United consolidated third spot in League Two with a 1-0 victory at Forest Green Rovers.

Szmodics bagged his eighth goal of the season – and his third in four matches – to help the U’s secure a narrow win at the New Lawn and collect three crucial points.

It was a disciplined away performance from Colchester, who were well organised throughout and restricted the hosts to few opportunities throughout the 90 minutes.

Colchester boasted the better chances in the match and although they only had one goal to show for their efforts, it proved enough to seal them victory.

Colchester head coach John McGreal made one change to his starting line-up for their game at Forest Green.

Skipper Luke Prosser was recalled to the side in place of youngster Ollie Kensdale, who dropped to the bench.

There was little to choose between the two sides in the opening quarter of the contest.

Both goalkeepers were spectators and although the U’s enjoyed the bulk of the possession, Prosser had to be alert in order to intercept a pass in his own area with Ben Morris lurking.

But with the home side happy to get men behind the ball, Colchester were patient in their approach play.

And they were rewarded when they made the all-important breakthrough in the 25th minute.

After Frank Nouble had tried his luck in the area, the ball ran to Szmodics whose low shot deflected in off Forest Green defender Gavin Gunning.

It was Szmodics’ eighth goal of the season and it was no more than the U’s deserved.

Colchester continued to be the better side after that and almost scored again four minutes before the break when Szmodics’ low shot was pushed away by keeper James Montgomery.

The U’s took a deserved lead in at the break and they started the second half in lively fashion too, with Nouble firing a long-range strike straight at Montgomery in the minutes that immediately followed half-time.

Forest Green struggled to break down a well-organised Colchester defence.

And although the hosts enjoyed their fair share of possession, many of their moves broke down in the final third.

However, they did have a decent penalty appeal rejected when their half-time substitute Theo Archibald tumbled under Ryan Jackson’s challenge in the area, with referee Kevin Johnson waving away the hosts’ claims.

Szmodics fired a decent chance straight at Montgomery just after the hour, after Mikael Mandron had headed on Jackson’s long pass before the U’s were forced to make their first change of the match when right-back Ryan Jackson limped off and was replaced by Brennan Dickenson.

Former Colchester midfielder Lloyd James saw his looping header sail just over the bar with 14 minutes remaining, as the hosts looked for an equaliser.

But Montgomery was forced to save Mandron’s shot and Harry Pell fired straight at the Rovers keeper seconds later.

And although the hosts tried hard to find an equaliser as the clock ticked down, the U’s were well worth their away-day win.