Game of the Day: SAFC 3 Colchester 1

by Kate Smith

Elliott double sinks U's in first SoL visit.

18th November 2006

Striker Stephen Elliott bagged a brace during Colchester's first-ever visit to the Stadium of Light to send the U's home on the losing side.

The Irishman struck twice either side of the half-time break to kickstart Roy Keane's side's promotion push.

Colchester arrived at the Stadium of Light enjoying their first season of second tier football and just two points off a play-off position, whilst Sunderland had not won in three consecutive games.

The visitors started well, with an impressive opening period of play, before Sunderland began to pick up pace in the run up to the break.

Efforts from Liam Miller and Chris Brown were contained by Colchester goalkeeper Aidan Davidson and there was little respite for the U's as dangerous crosses from Dean Whitehead and Lewin Nyatanga failed to find a Sunderland player in the box.

Elliott was denied twice just after the half hour mark, before making a breakthrough on the stroke of half-time when he found space inside the 18-yard box and beat Davison at his near post.

Sunderland forged 2-0 ahead just after the 50th minute mark as Elliott claimed his second goal of the game, thanks to a ferocious cross from Whitehead.

Chris Brown had a goal disallowed in the 68th minute, despite celebrations following his close-range tap in, the referee's assistant ruled out the strike.

Colchester substitute Chris Iwelumo reduced the deficit after he capitalised on a defensive error to score with just over 10 minutes remaining, however, David Connolly, came off the bench to seal the win for Sunderland with a right-footed strike right at the death, his first since making the summer switch to Sunderland.

Sunderland: Ward, Whitehead, Varga, Danny Collins, Nyatanga, Miller, Leadbitter (Kavanagh 83), Yorke, Wallace (Hysen 83),Brown (Connolly 69), S. Elliott

Colchester: Davison, Halford, Baldwin, Brown, Barker, Duguid, Izzet, Jackson, McLeod (Jones 46), Cureton, Guy (Iwelumo 70)