Mike Jones' goal was enough to keep Crawley's slim League One play-off hopes alive with victory over strugglers Colchester United.

U's keeper Sam Walker saved from Billy Clarke and Jones, who then finished off Clarke's ball over the top.

The visitors twice hit the woodwork in the second half, Sanchez Watt heading against the bar before Dominic Vose hit the post.

Crawley are 15 points adrift of the play-offs but have four games in hand.

Colchester are 17th, but just two points above the relegation zone.

Crawley assistant manager Guy Whittingham told BBC Sussex:

"You're always happy when you win, and you're always happy when you put in a 'grinding' performance. It's a great result to have with a clean sheet. That's what you're after.

"We had a long break, and then to come back and win the games we won straight away was a huge achievement, so to get back to winning ways was good timing, especially with a tough game against Wolves coming up."

Colchester United manager Joe Dunne told BBC Essex:

"They had the first half, we had the second. I thought it was a fantastic response in the second half.

"It's another defeat unfortunately - we can't start games like we did today.

"We are making opportunities, we are just not taking them at the moment. We have to keep believing in ourselves.

"The players are trying exceptionally hard. It hurts them. They don't like losing. We are on a bit of a difficult run."

Lineup, Bookings (3) & Substitutions (5)

Crawley Town

  • 01 Jones
  • 04 Connolly Booked
  • 03 Sadler
  • 15 Bulman
  • 05 McFadzean
  • 12 Walsh
  • 21 Jones
  • 10 Drury (Torres - 74' )
  • 18 Tubbs (Proctor - 60' )
  • 07 Clarke
  • 11 Simpson

Substitutes

  • 08 Torres
  • 14 Proctor
  • 16 Kaikai
  • 17 Boateng
  • 25 Maddison
  • 28 Dicker
  • 29 Connolly

Colchester United

  • 44 Walker
  • 20 Wilson
  • 03 Dickson
  • 02 Wright
  • 04 Okuonghae
  • 18 Eastman Booked
  • 15 Bean
  • 06 Eastmond (Vose - 71' )
  • 17 Ibehre (Morrison - 71' Booked )
  • 11 Sears (Massey - 45' )
  • 07 Watt

Substitutes

  • 01 Cousins
  • 09 Morrison
  • 21 Massey
  • 22 Gilbey
  • 25 Vose
  • 39 Sesay
  • 41 Bonne
Ref: Chris Sarginson
Att: 3,182

Match Stats

Shots

11 5

On target

5 0

Corners

9 2

Fouls

9 16

Live Text Commentary

Full time

Full Time Match ends, Crawley Town 1, Colchester United 0.

90:00 +3:11 Full time

Full Time Second Half ends, Crawley Town 1, Colchester United 0.

90:00 +0:49

Corner, Colchester United. Conceded by Sergio Torres.

90:00 +0:03

Dominic Vose (Colchester United) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

89:58

Foul by Sergio Torres (Crawley Town).

89:03

Foul by Jamie Proctor (Crawley Town).

89:03

Marcus Bean (Colchester United) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

88:54

Attempt blocked. Clinton Morrison (Colchester United) right footed shot from the centre of the box is blocked.

87:46

Mark Connolly (Crawley Town) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

87:46

Foul by Gavin Massey (Colchester United).

86:02

Attempt missed. Billy Clarke (Crawley Town) left footed shot from outside the box is close, but misses to the right.

84:16

Corner, Crawley Town. Conceded by Tom Eastman.

83:46

Mark Connolly (Crawley Town) wins a free kick on the left wing.

83:46

Foul by Gavin Massey (Colchester United).

82:36

Attempt missed. Dannie Bulman (Crawley Town) right footed shot from outside the box is too high.

82:00

Billy Clarke (Crawley Town) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

82:00

Foul by Brian Wilson (Colchester United).

81:39

Attempt saved. Jamie Proctor (Crawley Town) right footed shot from the centre of the box is saved in the centre of the goal.

81:05

Dominic Vose (Colchester United) hits the left post with a right footed shot from outside the box.

79:30

Attempt missed. Kyle McFadzean (Crawley Town) header from the right side of the box misses to the right.

78:50 Booking

Booking Clinton Morrison (Colchester United) is shown the yellow card.

78:37

Billy Clarke (Crawley Town) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

78:37

Foul by Marcus Bean (Colchester United).

76:47

Corner, Crawley Town. Conceded by Ryan Dickson.

76:14

Corner, Crawley Town. Conceded by Marcus Bean.

75:19

Corner, Crawley Town. Conceded by Ryan Dickson.

74:42

Attempt blocked. David Wright (Colchester United) right footed shot from outside the box is blocked.

73:09 Substitution

Substitution Substitution, Crawley Town. Sergio Torres replaces Andy Drury.

72:27

Foul by Dannie Bulman (Crawley Town).

72:27

Sanchez Watt (Colchester United) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

72:02

Attempt blocked. Josh Simpson (Crawley Town) right footed shot from the centre of the box is blocked.

70:52 Substitution

Substitution Substitution, Colchester United. Clinton Morrison replaces Jabo Ibehre.

70:45 Substitution

Substitution Substitution, Colchester United. Dominic Vose replaces Craig Eastmond.

68:00

Matthew Sadler (Crawley Town) wins a free kick on the left wing.

67:59

Foul by Craig Eastmond (Colchester United).

66:22 Booking

Booking Tom Eastman (Colchester United) is shown the yellow card.

66:09

Jamie Proctor (Crawley Town) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

66:09

Foul by Tom Eastman (Colchester United).

65:21

Foul by Michael Jones (Crawley Town).

65:21

Marcus Bean (Colchester United) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

64:30

Michael Jones (Crawley Town) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

64:30

Foul by Marcus Bean (Colchester United).

62:05

Jamie Proctor (Crawley Town) wins a free kick on the right wing.

62:05

Foul by Ryan Dickson (Colchester United).

59:55 Substitution

Substitution Substitution, Crawley Town. Jamie Proctor replaces Matt Tubbs.

59:38

Michael Jones (Crawley Town) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

59:36

Foul by David Wright (Colchester United).

58:14

Sanchez Watt (Colchester United) hits the bar with a header from the centre of the box.

54:22

Corner, Colchester United. Conceded by Matthew Sadler.

51:27

Attempt saved. Andy Drury (Crawley Town) right footed shot from outside the box is saved in the centre of the goal.

49:12

Foul by Kyle McFadzean (Crawley Town).

49:12

Sanchez Watt (Colchester United) wins a free kick on the left wing.

48:45

Foul by Josh Simpson (Crawley Town).

48:45

Ryan Dickson (Colchester United) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

45:29

Andy Drury (Crawley Town) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

45:29

Foul by Sanchez Watt (Colchester United).

45:00

Second Half begins Crawley Town 1, Colchester United 0.

45:00 Substitution

Substitution Substitution, Colchester United. Gavin Massey replaces Freddie Sears.

45:00 +1:12 Half time

Half Time First Half ends, Crawley Town 1, Colchester United 0.

45:00 +0:42

Corner, Crawley Town. Conceded by Brian Wilson.

44:32

Foul by Josh Simpson (Crawley Town).

44:32

Marcus Bean (Colchester United) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

43:42

Matthew Sadler (Crawley Town) wins a free kick on the left wing.

43:42

Foul by Brian Wilson (Colchester United).

40:43 Goal scored

Goal! Goal! Crawley Town 1, Colchester United 0. Michael Jones (Crawley Town) left footed shot from the left side of the six yard box to the bottom right corner. Assisted by Billy Clarke.

37:40

Corner, Crawley Town. Conceded by David Wright.

35:04

Corner, Crawley Town. Conceded by Brian Wilson.

32:12

Foul by Dannie Bulman (Crawley Town).

32:12

Craig Eastmond (Colchester United) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

29:19

Billy Clarke (Crawley Town) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

29:19

Foul by David Wright (Colchester United).

28:20

Attempt missed. Freddie Sears (Colchester United) right footed shot from outside the box misses to the left.

27:32

Corner, Crawley Town. Conceded by Ryan Dickson.

27:21

Attempt blocked. Michael Jones (Crawley Town) right footed shot from the left side of the box is blocked.

26:30

Corner, Crawley Town. Conceded by David Wright.

25:47

Matt Tubbs (Crawley Town) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

25:47

Foul by David Wright (Colchester United).

24:56 Booking

Booking Mark Connolly (Crawley Town) is shown the yellow card.

24:44

Foul by Mark Connolly (Crawley Town).

24:44

Sanchez Watt (Colchester United) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

21:00

Hand ball by Freddie Sears (Colchester United).

19:37

Kyle McFadzean (Crawley Town) wins a free kick on the left wing.

19:37

Foul by Jabo Ibehre (Colchester United).

18:22

Attempt saved. Michael Jones (Crawley Town) right footed shot from the left side of the box is saved in the centre of the goal.

14:58

Attempt saved. Billy Clarke (Crawley Town) right footed shot from the centre of the box is saved in the centre of the goal.

12:24

Andy Drury (Crawley Town) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

12:24

Foul by Marcus Bean (Colchester United).

3:10

Attempt missed. Matt Tubbs (Crawley Town) right footed shot from outside the box is close, but misses to the right.

0:00

First Half begins.

0:00

Lineups are announced and players are warming up.

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