ASFC vs Colchester United

League Two
Score: 2 - 1

Match Report

Stanley secured a valuable 2-1 win against Colchester United, despite having to play for 45 minutes with ten men.

Billy Kee and Matty Pearson gave Stanley the lead before Omar Beckles was sent off for a harsh red card just before the break.

Chris Porter scored from the penalty spot on 76 minutes to get promotion chasing United back in it but Stanley held on for a vital win in their battle against the drop.

Former Stanley striker Kurtis Guthrie had the first shot on five minutes but it was put out for a corner while Mark Hughes, on his 50th appearance for the Reds, blocked a Brennan Dickenson goalbound strike.

Stanley’s first real chance came on 16 minutes when Jordan Clark got the ball in the area but fired wide.

The Reds opened the scoring on 18 minutes when Sean McConville’s ball from the left found Kee unmarked in the area and he had the easy task to smash the ball home from around 10 yards. It was his 12th goal of the season.

Colchester were forced to make an early substitution when frontman Denny Johnstone was stretchered off injured on 26 minutes with Chris Porter replacing him.

And it was Stanley who grew into the game as Shay McCartan forced a good save out of keeper Sam Walker from a 25 yard free kick  on 31 minutes and  the Colchester keeper couldn’t stop Pearson’s header from the resulting McConville corner which put Stanley 2-0 up.

Defender Pearson, who was angry at not scoring at Mansfield midweek, more than made up for that.

However Stanley faced a  tougher task before half-time when Dickenson was running onto a ball and Beckles caught him with referee Richard Clark showing the defender a red card on 45 minutes to the surprise of most of the fans in the Wham Stadium.

Colchester made two substitutions at the break but ten-men Stanley continued to press although Pearson did have to throw his body in front of one fierce strike.

McCartan came close to adding a third on the hour when referee Clark signalled play on following a foul on Kee and the striker raced through but he fired just wide of the far post.

However Colchester were back in it on 76 minutes when McConville was judged to have fouled Drey Wright in the area and Porter fired home the spot kick.

Defender George Elokobi came close to an equaliser on 81 minutes but, after a goalmouth melee, his overhead kick was deflected over the bar.

United continued to pile on the pressure with Porter firing just wide and Guthrie heading narrowly off-target but Pearson could have eased the pressure after a powering run from his own half but his final shot was easy for Walker.

In the end Stanley held on for what could be a crucial win.