S a l f o r d
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Salford City football Club

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Team Sheet

Colchester United
29
Shamal George
4
Luke Chambers
5
Tommy Smith
8
Cole Skuse
9
Frank Nouble
10
Alan Judge
11
Freddie Sears
14
Noah Chilvers

Jasper 80'

19
Armando Dobra

Eastman 52'

23
Charlie Daniels
27
Cameron Coxe

Wiredu 52'

Salford City FC
1
Tom King
4
Jason Lowe
5
Ash Eastham (c)
6
Corrie Ndaba
8
Matthew Lund
Yellow card for Matthew Lund

Willock 90'

9
Tom Elliott
1 goals for Tom Elliott
10
Ash Hunter

Love 76'

11
Josh Morris

Wright 76'

16
Jordan Turnbull
Yellow card for Jordan Turnbull
32
Liam Shephard
37
Brandon Thomas-Asante
Red card for Brandon Thomas-Asante Yellow card for Brandon Thomas-Asante
Substitutes
24
Jake Turner
3
Ryan Clampin
6
Brendan Wiredu
7
Luke Hannant
17
Sylvester Jasper
Yellow card for Sylvester Jasper
18
Tom Eastman
34
Samson Tovide
Substitutes
12
Zach Jeacock
2
Donald Love
7
Tyreik Wright
14
Matty Willock
20
Aramide Oteh
24
Andy Smith
30
Kelly N'Mai
Managers
Head Coach - Hayden Mullins
Managers
Manager - Gary Bowyer
Match Officals
Referee - Craig Hicks
Assistant Referee - Stephen Brown
Assistant Referee - Anthony Da Costa
Fourth Official - Stuart Butler

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Match
Report

A scintillating first-half performance proved more than enough for Salford City to pick up their first away win of the season. Colchester United were simply not at the races during the opening 45 minutes and although the hosts improved after the break, they never seriously threatened to get back into the game. Strikers Brandon Thomas-Asante and Tom Elliott both grabbed their first goals of the campaign on a fine afternoon that was marred only by a second yellow card for the former

There were no changes from the XI that started last Saturday’s draw -vs- Northampton Town, and the bench was unchanged too.

On an afternoon that would yield few chances for the U’s, they might have gone ahead within the very first minute. Noah Chilvers’ forward pass found Armando Dobra who had spotted Freddie Sears’ run into the box. It only needed a decent pass to give the former West Ham striker a sight of goal but Dobra put too much weight on a ball that was scooped up by Ammies’ keeper Tom King.

Salford responded by going much closer as Josh Morris found space on the left to get in a cross. Midfielder Jason Lowe has yet to open his Salford scoring account but went close here as his header came back off the bar.

The Ammies had started well, and Elliott latched on to Liam Shephard’s pass down the right with 5 minutes played. A neat finish followed but the assistant’s flag had been raised to indicate the big striker had strayed offside.

The early pressure on Colchester’s goal continued and Ash Hunter’s cross from a deep position on the left was headed over at the near post the by stretching Thomas-Asante.

The U’s looked shaky and it was no real surprise when the visitors went ahead. In the 9th minute a spell of intense Salford pressure culminated with Elliott chesting the ball down for Morris who jinked past a challenge before getting in a left-footed shot. Home keeper Shamal George failed to hold and THOMAS-ASANTE, who hadn’t found the net since his brace on the final day of 2020-2021 - was on hand to tuck a 5-yard finish into the net.

No more than the Ammies deserved for their enterprising start to the game, and they would continue to look by far the more dangerous side. With 13 minutes played Shepard’s run on the right was finished off by a cross that just evaded the stretching Elliott at the far post.

Shephard was behind the next chance too, lobbing in a forward ball that was flicked on by Elliott. Thomas-Asante picked up possession on the right-hand side of the box but could only lift an effort high and wide of the far post.

Colchester were struggling to gain a foothold and could have gone further behind on 19 minutes. Ash Hunter’s left-of-centre 18-yarder looked to be on target until George managed to push the ball just outside the far post.

Salford were playing very well, passing the ball around patiently and winning it back quickly when they needed to. Midway through the first half Thomas-Asante hit a rising, left-of-centre effort that too a deflection that beat George’s dive before striking the bar and dropping back into play. Defender Tommy Smith made a hash of his attempted clearance a yard from the line as Elliott closed in, yet fortune was with him as the luck of the bounce allowed him to nod the ball away just in time.

Within a minute Eastham had the ball in the net from a corner only for the goal to be disallowed as the referee had spotted a foul in the area. A reprieve for Colchester but it would not last as their creaking defence was breached for a second time, during the 25th minute. Thomas-Asante and Morris combined well beforeELLIOTT lobbed a great pass out to Shephard on the right before making his way towards the far post. When the cross came in the ex-Millwall man made no mistake, getting up high between two defenders for a 6-yard header that cannoned off the turf and up into the net beyond the reach of George.

A two-goal advantage that by no means flattered the Ammies. Gary Bowyer’s side looked composed, were keeping possession and to be fair, at this stage of the game, Colchester were chasing shadows.

The U’s began to see a bit more of the ball during the final stages of the first half but were unable to find a way through a very solid Salford defence. The visitors were looking for more goals and 9 minutes before the interval Thomas-Asante found Morris on the right and his low delivery fizzed across the 6-yard box without getting a finishing touch.

Colchester had contributed virtually nothing to the afternoon’s attacking moments, but when Jordan Turnbull was penalised and booked for handball, the home side had a free kick in a dangerous position. From 25 yards out and just right of centre Alan Judge managed to lift the set-piece over the defensive wall only for Tom King to move swiftly to his left as he punched the ball away.

A pretty modest effort but it was the first time Colchester had managed to muster a significant threat.
The Ammies looked capable of adding to their tally and in the 40th minute Thomas-Asante found Morris on the right. After switching the ball onto his left foot the former Fleetwood man delivered a cross that was headed clear, but only as far as Thomas-Asante. A chance for his second goal of the afternoon, but the 15-yarder was lifted over the bar.

A neat Sears turn inside the area was followed by a shot that King saved, but he needn’t have bothered as the assistant’s flag was up for offside.

During time added on Hunter drifted inside from the left to the edge of the box but couldn’t keep his effort down.

HALF-TIME: COLCHESTER UNITED 0 SALFORD CITY 2

An eminently satisfying first half from Salford’s point of view and as they emerged for the second to find the rain had become heavier and the wind more boisterous.

The inclement conditions didn’t knock the Ammies out of their stride, although Matty Lund was booked for a foul after 50 minutes.

With the home support showing signs of discontent U’s manager Hayden Mullins made a double change just 7 minutes into the second half.

There was no initial sign that those substitutions had done much good as Salford continued to press and dominate possession. Perhaps the cutting edge that had distinguished their first half performance wasn’t as sharp now, but the Ammies were still looking very comfortable indeed.

Thomas-Asante picked up a yellow card just before the hour for a foul, and that would become more significant later in the afternoon.

Having struggled to put much together since the restart Colchester began to show some signs of attacking life as the half progressed. In the 63rd minute Tommy Smith got in a header form a corner only to see his effort blocked by Turnbull. Soon after that Chilvers played a pass to Judge on the right and he delivered a cross the far post. Frank Nouble rose to head down, yet Sears could only lift his angled shot over the target.

There was another chance for Colchester on 72 minutes after a free-kick into the Salford penalty area was cleared. Substitute Brendan Wiredu cracked in a shot only to see it bravely blocked by visiting skipper Eastham.

A decent enough spell for the home side but King hadn’t really been tested and their brief flurry of attacking activity was not to last. Salford had been quieter in front of goal but with 16 minutes left Thomas-Asante hit a low 17-yarder that George saved and held to his right.

Tyreik Wright & Donald Love (making his Salford debut) replaced Morris and Hunter for the final 15. Wright almost made an immediate impact after he collected a Thomas-Asante pass on the left before driving into the area and playing a low ball to the near post. Thomas-Asante had moved to meet the pass and tried a flicked effort that failed to trouble George.

The U’s did their best to find a way back into contention and on 84 minutes King was forced to shovel a header from a corner around his post. From the set-piece Salford broke at speed, with Thomas-Asante and Wright swapping passes on the edge of the box before Elliott got in a shot that was blocked.

An accomplished afternoon for Salford finished on a disappointing note as Thomas-Asante's sliding challenge on Wiredu was punished by a second yellow card meaning the striker will now sit out next Saturday’s visit to Walsall.

There were to be 6 minutes of time added on but with conditions deteriorating neither side was able to create a chance. The final whistle sounded out in rain-sodden Essex and Salford City had 3 richly deserved points in the bag.

FULL-TIME: COLCHESTER UNITED 0 SALFORD CITY 2

It’s not unfair to suggest that Salford City’s points total prior to this game probably didn’t reflect their performances so far. This afternoon – and particularly during that very impressive first-half – everything fell into place for Gary Bowyer’s side.

A first-ever win over Colchester United was very much merited and the margin of victory could have been considerably larger. The U’s were stopped from playing and Salford put away enough of their chances to secure a comfortable victory on the road. The side deserved the ovation they received from their faithful travelling support, who made themselves head all afternoon.

The team seems to be settling into its rhythm, despite being hit by injuries, suspension and international call-ups. Next week sees a return to the traditionally happy hunting ground of Walsall’s Banks’s Stadium and back-to-back away wins might just provide a launching pad for the Ammies’ season. Based on this afternoon’s showing a run of good form might well be on the cards.

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