Stevenage 0-0 Colchester United: 10-man Boro battle to hard-earned point

PUBLISHED: 17:05 04 January 2020 | UPDATED: 17:06 04 January 2020

Referee Ollie Yates shows a red card to Tom Soares of Stevenage during Stevenage vs Colchester United, Sky Bet EFL League 2 Football at the Lamex Stadium on 4th January 2020

Referee Ollie Yates shows a red card to Tom Soares of Stevenage during Stevenage vs Colchester United, Sky Bet EFL League 2 Football at the Lamex Stadium on 4th January 2020

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Stevenage survived over 70 minutes with 10 men as they battled to a 0-0 draw against League Two promotion chasers Colchester United at the Lamex on Saturday afternoon.

Ben Stevenson of Colchester United and Craig Mackail-Smith of Stevenage during Stevenage vs Colchester United, Sky Bet EFL League 2 Football at the Lamex Stadium on 4th January 2020Ben Stevenson of Colchester United and Craig Mackail-Smith of Stevenage during Stevenage vs Colchester United, Sky Bet EFL League 2 Football at the Lamex Stadium on 4th January 2020

Tom Soares was sent off on 18 minutes for a heavy challenge on Luke Gambin - despite winning the ball - to leave Boro down to 10 men for over 70 minutes of the game, but they held on for a well-earned point despite persistant pressure.

Stevenage had a golden chance on nine minutes as a lucky deflection broke for Craig Mackail-Smith and he crossed for Dean Parrett, but the midfielder couldn't get a shot away from close range.

Despite a positive opening for the hosts, they suffered a big blow on 18 minutes as Soares was shown a red card.

The midfielder put in a heavy challenge on Luke Gambin after a Colchester clearance, and despite winning the ball he was sent off, much to the anger of his team-mates.

Chris Stokes of Stevenage and Luke Gambin of Colchester United during Stevenage vs Colchester United, Sky Bet EFL League 2 Football at the Lamex Stadium on 4th January 2020Chris Stokes of Stevenage and Luke Gambin of Colchester United during Stevenage vs Colchester United, Sky Bet EFL League 2 Football at the Lamex Stadium on 4th January 2020

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The U's had a big chance down the other end as Luke Norris saw his shot saved by Paul Farman before Paul Digby cleared the ball off the line.

The danger wasn't clear though as a cross back into the box fell to Callum Harriott. But Farman made a superb diving save to keep the score level.

With an extra man, Colchester looked to press home their advantage after the break and they went close when Norris nearly turned home Frank Nouble's cross.

Dean Parrett of Stevenage and Harry Pell of Colchester United during Stevenage vs Colchester United, Sky Bet EFL League 2 Football at the Lamex Stadium on 4th January 2020Dean Parrett of Stevenage and Harry Pell of Colchester United during Stevenage vs Colchester United, Sky Bet EFL League 2 Football at the Lamex Stadium on 4th January 2020

The pressure from the away side continued as the half went on and Farman was called into action to keep out Harry Pell's powerful strike from the edge of the box and Ben Stevenson's deflected shot.

The Boro 'keeper made his best save of the afternoon in the closing minutes of the game as he clawed away Theo Robinson's header that was destined for the bottom corner.

Graham Westley's men held on for a point that their efforts deserved to move them off the bottom of League Two.

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