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Match Reports

Report | Gillingham 0-3 Colchester United

Colchester score three second half goals to win at Priestfield.

26 August 2023

Match Reports

Report | Gillingham 0-3 Colchester United

Colchester score three second half goals to win at Priestfield.

26 August 2023

Gills beaten at ME7.

Colchester scored three second-half goals to condemn Gillingham to their first defeat of the season at the Priestfield Stadium on Saturday.

Neil Harris made two changes to the side that beat Crawley Town 1-0. Connor Mahoney made his Gillingham debut after signing on loan from Huddersfield, while Tim Dieng returned to the starting XI. Dom Jefferies and George Lapslie were not involved in the matchday squad.

Dieng had a great opportunity in the seventh minute. Mahoney floated a corner deep into the penalty area, and it was met by Dieng, who had done well to peel away from his marker before making contact. The header was a powerful one but was well saved by Owen Goodman.

Mahoney had a half-chance moments later. He used good footwork to make his way towards the penalty area before creating space to shoot from 18 yards. It was a strong effort, which flew just over the crossbar at the near post.

Jake Turner was called into action in the 22nd minute to deny Samson Tovide. The ball fell to Tovide from a tight angle, who tried curling the ball towards the far bottom corner. Turner did well to get down and palmed away from the danger before Gills dealt with the rebound.


HALF-TIME: Gillingham 0-0 Colchester United


Gills had a penalty appeal turned down in the opening moments of the second half when Nichols went down inside the penalty area. There were large appeals from the Rainham End, but the referee remained convinced that there had not been a foul.

The visitors went in search of the opening goal on the hour as they put some pressure on the Gillingham penalty area. A cross into the box took a touch off a Gills defender, taking it out of play for a corner. Had there been no touch, it could have sat perfectly for Tovide. From the resulting corner, Jayden Fevrier had a goal-bound attempt well-blocked by Shad Ogie.

Shaun Williams provided a goal-saving tackle in the 63rd minute to deny Bradley Ihionvien. Tovide made a powerful run through the middle, muscling his way beyond a couple of Gillingham defenders before the ball ran to Ihionvien. It seemed the forward had a clear path to the goal, but Williams put in the perfect tackle to send it behind for a corner.

Fiacre Kelleher fired the visitors in front after sustained pressure on the Gillingham goal. The hosts could not deal with a ball into the box, and after somehow clearing it off the line twice, it fell to Kelleher, who smashed it beyond Turner and the players on the line.

In response to the goal, Gillingham made two substitutions. Macauley Bonne and Ethan Coleman replaced Ashley Nadesan and Shaun Williams respectively.

Bonne almost made an immediate impact off some quick thinking. Ogie’s throw was headed as far as Cheye Alexander, who shot on the volley. It was hit into the ground and appeared to be going wide. However, Bonne flicked it towards the near post, forcing Goodman into a save at full stretch.

Tovide made it two for the visitors in the 77th minute. A cross from the right fell to the striker, who brought it down before thumping it into the back of the net.

Gillingham made two more changes when Robbie McKenzie and Jayden Clarke replaced Alexander and Dieng.

Ihionvien made it three with seven minutes remaining. There were question marks on whether he had strayed offside after a ball forward. He latched onto it before finding himself one-on-one with Turner. He remained composed before chipping it over Turner, and it fell into the back of the net.

Coleman was shown a straight red card when he fouled Arthur Read midway inside the Colchester half. The referee was quick to brandish the red card, giving the midfielder his marching orders.


FULL-TIME: Gillingham 0-3 Colchester United


Gillingham: Turner, Alexander (McKenzie 80’), Ehmer, Ogie, Malone, S. Williams (Coleman 67’), Dieng (Clarke 80’), J. Williams, Mahoney (Masterson 89’), Nichols, Nadesan (Bonne 67’)

Unused Substitutes: Morris, Chambers

Colchester United: Goodman, Greenidge, Hall, Lawrence (Kelleher 45’), Tchamdeu (Newby 54’), Egbo, Read, Fevrier (Bandeira 86’), Chilvers, Taylor (Ihionvien 55’), Tovide (Kazeem 86’)

Unused Substitutes: Smith, Jay


Referee: Thomas Kirk

Attendance: 6991 (314 away fan)

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