Mandron bags a brace as U’s wallop the Gills

PUBLISHED: 16:51 28 July 2018 | UPDATED: 18:12 28 July 2018

Sammie Szmodics, who scored Colchester United's opener in Saturday's big victory over Gillingham. Picture: STEVE WALLER

Sammie Szmodics, who scored Colchester United's opener in Saturday's big victory over Gillingham. Picture: STEVE WALLER

© Copyright Stephen Waller

Colchester United 5 Gillingham 1

Mikael Mandron, in gymnastic mood, bagged a brace in today's impressive home win over Gillingham. Picture: STEVE WALLERMikael Mandron, in gymnastic mood, bagged a brace in today's impressive home win over Gillingham. Picture: STEVE WALLER

Colchester United put the finishing touches to a successful pre-season by walloping Gillingham 5-1 in their final friendly of the summer, at the JobServe Community Stadium this afternoon.

The U’s made it six wins from seven senior pre-season matches, following on from their victories over Maldon & Tiptree, Braintree Town, Colwyn Bay, Dartford and Milwall with a dominant display against the League One Gills.

Mikael Mandron netted a brace, and the other goals were scored by Sammie Szmodics, Aaron Collins and Tom Eastman.

The U’s enjoyed the perfect start, going ahead after just five minutes. Mikael Mandron was the creator and Szmodics slid home from the Frenchman’s lay-off.

Szmodics came close to doubling the lead with a long-range lob that ballooned over the bar, but he had a big part to play in the U’s second goal, which arrived in the 16th minute.

Mandron released Szmodics and the U’s attacker finally laid the ball on a plate for Collins, the Wolves loanee prodding home from close in.

It was Mandron’s turn to get amongst the goals on the half-hour mark. The ex-Wigan man, fresh from his 10 goals last season, capped a good individual pre-season campaign by burying the U’s third.

Already trailing by three goals, the Gills suffered another setback in the 39th minute when Mark Byrne was sent off for his challenge on U’s midfielder Tom Lapslie. A scuffle followed that incident.

Ten-man Gillingham did pull a goal back, on the stroke of half-time. Dillon Barnes was beaten by Dean Parrett’s low shot following a corner.

The U’s restored their three-goal margin in the 57th minute thanks to a smart finish from Mandron past keeper Tomas Holy.

And it was 5-1 to the Essex hosts on 62 minutes. Eastman was in the right place to head home from a corner routine.

Colchester United starting line-up: Barnes, Vincent-Young, Eastman, Kent, Prosser, Dickenson, Lapslie, Comley, Szmodics, Collins, Mandron.

Subs: Ross, Jackson, Senior, Pell, A Barnes, Wright, Kensdale, Gondoh, Clamplin, Nouble.

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