Who can blame disgruntled U's fans?

RUMOUR has it that some disgruntled Colchester United fans left during the second half in their demoralising home defeat at the hands of struggling Barnet; others chose to stay and boo at the end.

Who could really blame any of them?

They were dismayed to see the U’s, who were looking for a third straight home win and to close the gap on the play-off places, churn out such a lacklustre performance against a side battling against relegation for the second successive week.

It was not even as if the U’s were unfortunate to lose.

Barnet deserved their win and their young debutant goalkeeper George Legg, on loan from Reading, had one save to make, much like his Crewe counterpart Ben Garratt seven days earlier.

Colchester keeper Sam Walker was sent up front for set pieces near the end but the delivery was nowhere near him, which neatly summed up his side’s performance.

Raising a laugh

THERE were one or two sniggers when Colchester United’s man of the match was announced over the PA system in the closing stages of their defeat against Barnet.

That was not down to the identity of the award’s recipient Kane Vincent-Young, who was certainly not the worst U’s performer on a dismal day for the hosts.

Indeed, the left wing-back was arguably one of Colchester’s better players, following an afternoon of few positives.

Rather, there was a delicious irony about the identity of the sponsors who made the award choice, given the nature of the U’s performance - Big Cheese comedy.

Post-match discussion

GRAHAM Westley has in the past had a reputation for keeping his players in the changing room for long periods after games.

But ironically it was his Colchester United counterpart John McGreal who took longer to emerge, after Barnet’s deserved 1-0 win.

McGreal spent more than 45 minutes with his players in the privacy of the dressing room in the aftermath of the U’s defeat, before emerging to speak to the waiting media.

The U’s head coach’s disappointment was there for all to see but he did not attempt to sugar-coat his team’s performance.

Instead, he offered a frank and honest assessment of their limp display and admitted they deserved nothing from the game.

At least the post-match meeting was productive; according to McGreal it was a “healthy” discussion to be taken into training next week.

Westley's words

ON a day when smiles were in short supply at the Weston Homes Community Stadium there was a bit of light relief provided by Graham Westley, who is rarely shy in coming forward.

“Get back in your box, Westley,” bellowed one Colchester United supporter sitting a few rows behind the Barnet manager, who had strayed momentarily from his technical area.

After a brief pause, the former Stevenage boss replied playfully “It’s West-ley,” placing special emphasis on the ‘t’ sound in his surname.

He followed it up with a cheeky smile and well he might, given his side’s battling performance and the vital three points it eventually secured.

A rare positive on a gloomy day

BELIEVE it or not, there was some good news for Colchester United yesterday.

Their under-18s’ involvement in the FA Youth Cup quarter-finals has finally been confirmed, after their fifth-round victors Reading were thrown out of the competition for fielding an under-age player in their 4-1 triumph over the U’s at the Weston Homes Community Stadium, earlier this month.

As a result, Colchester will now host Arsenal at the Community Stadium on Tuesday week, kick-off 7pm.

It will be a game to savour for Chris Llewellyn and his talented youngsters.

To reach the last eight of the prestigious youth competition is an achievement in itself and they can now enjoy the night for what it is.