Mathias Pogba hit the second-half winner as Crewe dented Colchester United's League One survival hopes.

Luke Murphy gave the Railwaymen the lead from the spot after Josh Thompson handled Gregor Robertson's cross.

U's defender Magnus Okuonghae then had a header cleared off the line before George Porter slotted home to level for the hosts by half-time after good work from substitute Michael Smith.

  • Colchester boss Joe Dunne initially intended to challenge Jabo Ibehre's midweek dismissal against Hartlepool, but the club instead opted not to appeal against his three-match ban.

However, Murphy found Pogba in the area to hit his 14th goal of the season.

New Crewe signing Nathan Ellington remained on the bench as top scorer Pogba's 72nd-minute strike ended the Alex's untimely run of four defeats in five games, to edge them back within 11 points of the play-offs.

With Jabo Ibehre starting a three-game ban and fellow striker Freddie Sears (knee) also absent, Colchester gave debuts to their two midweek loan signings, Troy Hewitt (QPR) and Michael Smith (Charlton Athletic), who both came off the bench.

Lineup, Bookings (4) & Substitutions (5)

Colchester

  • 44 Walker
  • 02 Wright (Smith - 34' )
  • 04 Okuonghae
  • 18 Eastman (Thompson - 17' Booked )
  • 20 Wilson
  • 25 White
  • 41 Clifford
  • 14 Bond
  • 39 Porter Booked
  • 09 Morrison (Hewitt - 74' )
  • 21 Massey

Substitutes

  • 01 Cousins
  • 40 Thompson
  • 15 Bean
  • 12 Hewitt
  • 19 Ladapo
  • 22 Smith
  • 33 Compton

Crewe

  • 01 Phillips
  • 02 Tootle
  • 03 Davis
  • 05 Ellis
  • 15 Robertson
  • 08 Murphy
  • 19 Osman Booked
  • 07 M Clayton (Turton - 86' )
  • 09 Pogba Booked (Dugdale - 90' )
  • 10 Leitch-Smith
  • 11 Moore

Substitutes

  • 13 Martin
  • 06 Dugdale
  • 12 Turton
  • 17 Ray
  • 14 Mellor
  • 27 Colclough
  • 32 Ellington
Ref: Hill
Att: 3,085

Match Stats

Shots

22 3

On target

11 2

Corners

3 3

Fouls

2 13

Live Text Commentary

90:00 +3:50 Full time

Full Time The referee blows for the end of the match.

90:00 +1:28

Effort from outside the penalty box by Andy Bond goes wide left of the goal.

90:00 +0:28 Substitution

Substitution Mathias Pogba goes off and Adam Dugdale comes on.

89:47

Gavin Massey produces a right-footed shot from deep inside the penalty box which goes wide of the left-hand post.

87:20

Mark Ellis challenges Michael Smith unfairly and gives away a free kick. Andy Bond produces a shot on goal direct from the free kick. Effort on goal by Andy Bond from just outside the area goes harmlessly over the target.

85:56

Sam Walker takes the indirect free kick.

85:56 Substitution

Substitution Max Clayton leaves the field to be replaced by Oliver Turton.

85:56

The referee blows for offside.

84:43 Booking

Booking George Porter is booked.

84:03

Troy Hewitt takes a shot. Blocked by Harry Davis. Effort from inside the area by George Porter misses to the left of the target.

81:41

Brian Wilson takes the free kick.

81:41 Booking

Booking Mathias Pogba is booked.

81:35

Josh Thompson fouled by Mathias Pogba, the ref awards a free kick.

77:26

Josh Thompson fouled by Mathias Pogba, the ref awards a free kick. Billy Clifford restarts play with the free kick.

73:20 Substitution

Substitution Troy Hewitt replaces Clinton Morrison.

72:33

Outswinging corner taken right-footed by Billy Clifford, clearance by Mark Ellis.

71:14

Luke Murphy provided the assist for the goal.

71:14 Goal scored

Goal! - Mathias Pogba - Colchester 1 - 2 Crewe Mathias Pogba fires in a goal from inside the penalty box to the bottom left corner of the goal. Colchester 1-2 Crewe.

70:46

George Porter takes a shot. Save by Steve Phillips.

70:19

Gavin Massey takes a shot. Comfortable save by Steve Phillips.

69:16

Outswinging corner taken left-footed by Gregor Robertson, Headed effort from inside the area by Mathias Pogba misses to the right of the goal.

68:38

Short corner taken by Luke Murphy.

67:07

Brian Wilson takes the free kick.

67:07 Booking

Booking Abdul Osman goes into the referee's book for unsporting behaviour.

66:32

Abdul Osman concedes a free kick for a foul on Clinton Morrison.

65:46

John White fouled by Byron Moore, the ref awards a free kick. Free kick taken by Sam Walker.

65:01

Byron Moore challenges John White unfairly and gives away a free kick. Free kick taken by Magnus Okuonghae.

64:19

The offside flag is raised against Michael Smith. Indirect free kick taken by Mark Ellis.

63:14

Free kick awarded for an unfair challenge on Clinton Morrison by Luke Murphy. Direct free kick taken by Billy Clifford.

62:23

Billy Clifford produces a right-footed shot from just outside the penalty box that goes wide left of the target.

60:48

Effort on goal by Michael Smith from deep inside the area goes harmlessly over the bar.

54:18

Michael Smith gives away a free kick for an unfair challenge on Mark Ellis. Steve Phillips takes the direct free kick.

53:16

Abdul Osman challenges Clinton Morrison unfairly and gives away a free kick. Billy Clifford takes the free kick.

52:28

Gavin Massey takes a shot. Save made by Steve Phillips.

51:28

Gregor Robertson concedes a free kick for a foul on George Porter. Billy Clifford takes the direct free kick.

50:34

The official flags Michael Smith offside. Free kick taken by Harry Davis.

49:23

Corner from the right by-line taken by Billy Clifford, Josh Thompson takes a shot. Steve Phillips makes a save.

49:09

Michael Smith takes a shot. Blocked by Harry Davis.

46:09

John White takes a shot. Blocked by Matt Tootle.

45:01

The referee gets the second half started.

45:00 +3:08 Half time

Half Time The match has reached half-time.

45:00 +1:56

Gregor Robertson is flagged offside by the assistant referee. Free kick taken by Sam Walker.

45:00 +0:46

Effort from outside the box by Gavin Massey goes wide right of the target.

44:53

The assistant referee flags for offside against Byron Moore. Free kick taken by Sam Walker.

44:06

The offside flag is raised against Michael Smith. Steve Phillips takes the indirect free kick.

41:52

Assist by Michael Smith.

41:52 Goal scored

Goal! - George Porter - Colchester 1 - 1 Crewe George Porter finds the net with a goal from deep inside the penalty box to the bottom left corner of the goal. Colchester 1-1 Crewe.

39:58

Gavin Massey takes a shot. Matt Tootle gets a block in. Inswinging corner taken by Billy Clifford from the left by-line, Magnus Okuonghae takes a shot. Luke Murphy manages to make a clearance. Header on goal by Magnus Okuonghae from inside the box goes harmlessly over the target.

39:11

Billy Clifford produces a left-footed shot from outside the penalty box and misses left.

37:52

Effort from deep inside the area by Gavin Massey misses to the right of the goal.

36:11

Unfair challenge on Clinton Morrison by Abdul Osman results in a free kick. Billy Clifford takes the direct free kick.

33:13 Substitution

Substitution Michael Smith joins the action as a substitute, replacing David Wright.

27:55

Gregor Robertson takes a shot. Sam Walker makes a save.

24:51 Goal scored

Goal! - Luke Murphy - Colchester 0 - 1 Crewe Luke Murphy scores a placed penalty. Colchester 0-1 Crewe.

24:04 Booking

Booking Caution for Josh Thompson.

23:47

Josh Thompson handles the ball and concedes a .

17:58

Free kick awarded for a foul by Luke Murphy on David Wright. Billy Clifford restarts play with the free kick.

16:41

David Wright takes the direct free kick.

16:41 Substitution

Substitution Tom Eastman leaves the field to be replaced by Josh Thompson.

16:41

Abdul Osman challenges Billy Clifford unfairly and gives away a free kick.

14:05

Shot from just outside the area by Gavin Massey misses to the right of the target.

8:19

Unfair challenge on Abdul Osman by Andy Bond results in a free kick. Luke Murphy restarts play with the free kick.

6:49

The offside flag is raised against Andy Bond. Steve Phillips restarts play with the free kick.

3:45

Foul by Abdul Osman on Clinton Morrison, free kick awarded. Andy Bond takes the free kick.

2:57

Short corner taken by Luke Murphy from the left by-line.

0:00

The match has kicked off.

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