Noah Chilvers' first-half goal proved to be crucial as Colchester enhanced their chances of avoiding the drop-zone with a hard-fought 1-0 victory over play-off contenders Salford City. Despite an early save from home keeper Alex Cairns to deny John Akinde, Colchester continued to create multiple opportunities in and out the box and at one point came close to scoring in the sixth minute when Chilvers' shot from the edge of the box struck the post. Salford's first real chance came from Luke Bolton, whose first-time effort narrowly missed the target.
In the 22nd minute, Colchester seized the lead as Chilvers received an assist from Samson Tovide just past the box and struck, scoring a deflected goal. Salford came close to leveling up before half time when Matty Lund's header from Touray's delivery missed the target again. In the 2nd half, Salford ramped up the pressure in search of an equaliser, with Matt Smith's header from Touray's corner grazing the post as Conor McAleny's attempt from sailed over the crossbar.
This result sees Colchester United move further away from the drop-zone and with it being a win over Salford City, we imagine this could bring some much needed confidence to the U's squad. On the other hand, this could wind up being a 5th League 2 campaign for Salford next season if they can't manage to get themselves back into a play-off position with their form beginning to take a rock. 23rd place Hartlepool travel to the Ammies on Tuesday night for a late kick-off, and with United's form currently being one of the worst in the league, Salford would imagine they should have the tools to fight their way back into the play-off's. However, as it stands, it will only take Hartlepool 2 points to move out the drop-zone, so an unexpected win to put a further dampener on Salford's season may be on the cards for the travelling Hartlepool fans this Tuesday.
Salford have beaten Hartlepool by 2 in the past two meetings and will be hoping to do the same again.