Hucks fails to find positives
DAVID CUFFLEY Sloppy all over - that was stand-in captain Darren Huckerby's verdict as Norwich City suffered another East Anglian derby embarrassment. Peter Grant's Canaries, humbled 3-1 by Ipswich at Portman Road earlier in the season, let down their travelling fans once again on their own doorstep with a woeful second-half capitulation against Colchester United at Layer Road.
Sloppy all over - that was stand-in captain Darren Huckerby's verdict as Norwich City suffered another East Anglian derby embarrassment.
Peter Grant's Canaries, humbled 3-1 by Ipswich at Portman Road earlier in the season, let down their travelling fans once again on their own doorstep with a woeful second-half capitulation against Colchester United at Layer Road.
Three goals in the space of 20 minutes after the break, from ex-Canary Jamie Cureton, Richard Garcia and Chris Iwelumo gave the U's a convincing Coca-Cola Championship victory.
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And Huckerby, handed the skipper's armband in the absence of the injured Adam Drury - with midfielder Dickson Etuhu also sidelined by illness - admitted the damage could have been even worse.
He said: “In the first half I thought we were probably the better team. In the second half we just collapsed after we conceded a goal. We were sloppy all over the place.
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“I won't say we gave up but it was just not good enough, especially after the way we've been playing the last few weeks.
“We had to change a few things with Adam being out and Dickson not being very well, but we've got to do better than that.”
Colchester's win kept them in 10th place in the Championship, still with a slender mathematical chance of making the promotion play-offs, and certainly well placed to finish as East Anglia's top side.
Huckerby admitted: “They took their chances very well. In the first half we were the better team and it looked like we were on top. But they finished very well and near the end they could have had more, to be honest.
“They've got a good team ethic. They've come up from the division below together. Everyone knows what they're doing. They haven't really bought any big name players. They work hard as a team and they deserve what they get.
“Jamie's scored goals everywhere he's been. The other lad's a big handful and puts himself about, it makes it difficult and when you've got players like that, they're always going to cause people problems, especially here.
“It's not really a tight pitch. The ground's not the best. But they deserved to win today. The pitch was obviously very sticky, very dry, but it was the same for them.”
City go to Hull on Friday hoping that Drury, Etuhu and the injured Jürgen Colin will be it for duty.
Said Grant: “Dickson has been ill all week, to be fair. Jürgen got a groin strain in training yesterday. He's been struggling for the last week but yesterday it flared up again, so that's why he wasn't available today.
“Adam's improved a lot in the last week so I'm hoping he'll be available for next week. Time will tell. He's not trained with us yet since the injury and we'll see over the next few days. That's in the lap of the gods at this moment.”