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Born and Bred: Colchester United

Started on 14 March 2017 by ScottT
Latest Reply on 31 August 2017 by De Magere
Justice- I'm very happy to get him in, it was a surprise to see him available!

De Magere- Definitely, it's always helpful having someone who's been there and done that.

Griffin- It really will, we don't have much experience at this level so it's great to have a real leader at the club.

Colchester Complete Irvine Deal

Colchester United have completed the signing of Burton Albion midfielder Jackson Irvine for £875,000.

The Australian international, who has made 21 appearances for his country, has joined on a three-year-deal, keeping him at the club until the Summer of 2020. The fee of £875,000 is a record for the club, beating the previous record of £400,000 from Steven Gillespie back in 2008 as he joined from Cheltenham Town.

Irvine, 24, had previously represented Scotland at under 19's level as despite the midfielder being born in Melbourne, his father was born in Aberdeen which allowed him to become eligible. However, he had stated he wanted to play for the Australian senior side and did in September 2013 as he came off the bench to face Canada, describing his debut as 'Obviously pretty special.'

He began his career at Ringwood City and other small Australian local sides before making the move to Melbourne Victory in 2008. He never made a start for the first team, however attracted the interest of Scottish giants Celtic and made the move to Scotland in 2012. He went on to make a single appearance, instead being loaned out to Kilmarnock in 2013, making 27 appearances and then Ross County the next, making 28 starts before joining County permanently.

The 2015/16 season proved to be a breakout year for the Aussie, he impressed in the County side as he made 36 appearances, scoring two goals for his club. It attracted widespread interest from a host of League One clubs, but also Burton Albion who signed the player for a reported fee of just over £300,000.

Despite playing well for the Brewers, making 44 appearances for the side that year, the club were immediately relegated back to League One. Irvine was linked to numerous moves to the Chinese Super League, but turned down the opportunity stating 'I'm not interested in money.' He made 34 appearances last season in what proved to be a largely disappointing return for Burton to League One as they finished in 20th, seven points above the relegation zone.

Irvine has said he's 'delighted to be back in the Championship' and 'is relishing the chance to impress once again.' Colchester are heavy favourites for the drop and can very much be compared to the Burton Albion side who also made back-to-back promotions to the Championship under the guide of first Jimmy Floyd Hasselbaink and then Gary Rowett.

Nketiah Rejects United Return

Former United hotshot Eddie Nketiah has turned down the chance to rejoin Colchester on loan.

Nketiah impressed scoring 40 goals in 52 appearances in all competitions last season, 25 of them came in the league which saw Colchester promoted via the playoffs to the Championship. The English forward, who enjoyed a great strike partnership with Bradley Fewster last season, has turned down the U's and is instead looking set to join Premier League Huddersfield on loan.

Arsenal granted Colchester permission to loan the striker for the season, however the player himself has told the club that he would prefer the opportunity to play in the Premier League, despite being at the tender age of just 19.

Huddersfield, which seems to be the players preferred destination at the moment, were promoted in the 2016/17 season and in their debut season in the top flight, managed to finish 16th, eight points clear of Stoke who's ten year stay in the Premier League finally came to an end.

Colchester boss Paddy McLaughlin spoke of his disappointment saying, 'It's disappointing that we can't tempt Eddie to come back to the club where he was a huge part of the success last season, but that is always the trouble with loan deals - sometimes the club will refuse to re-enter talks and other times the player simply doesn't want to rejoin and that's the case here.'

'I can't complain, Eddie is being given a potential chance at top flight football with Huddersfield and I wouldn't be surprised if he gets the regular football he wants because he really did raise his profile here with us last season. The door is always open for him to return, he's an incredible footballer with a bright future and I would be a fool not to welcome him back with open arms in the possible future.'
Irvine looks a very good signing, but that rejection by Eddie will be a huge blow! Maybe as the window moves closer to the deadline he may change his mind
Screw Eddie! Damn him! Damn him to hell! :P
Griffin- Very pleased to bring in Irvine, only heard good things! Eddie is a pain, but yeah, hopefully he does reconsider if Huddersfield don't poach him!

Justice- If he doesn't come back, totally :P

Nick Pope Joins U's On Loan!/image/image.jpg_gen/derivatives/landscape_630/image.jpg

Burnley keeper Nick Pope has joined Championship side Colchester United on loan until the end of the season.

Colchester have signed Burnley no.2 shotstopper Nick Pope on loan until the end of the season, completing their seventh deal of the window already this Summer. Pope, 25, joined the Premier League outfit in 2016 for £1,100,000 from Charlton, who were relegated from the Championship that season as they began to prepare for life back in the top flight once again.

Failing to make a single league start in his first two years at the club, Pope has been left frustrated at the lack of opportunities he has been given and is searching for the exit door, so our sources believe. His contract at Turf Moor will expire next Summer and it is believed the club will allow his deal to run down.

The ex Athletic keeper has had an interesting career. He joined the Ipswich youth academy before being released in 2008, allowing him to make his senior debut with lower league side Bury Town. Impressive performances allowed him to attract interest from Charlton and he signed for the club in 2011.

The move prompted several loan spells out, firstly with Harrow Borough, making 15 appearances before joining Welling in the 2012 season on a 28 day loan, where he impressed once again for the Conference South side. Cambridge United called for the young keeper, Pope made nine appearances and kept four clean sheets for the U's, as they enjoyed promotion back to League Two.

In the same year, Pope also had short loan spells with York and Aldershot. He rejoined the former in 2014 and made 24 appearances in League Two, keeping 16 clean sheets in which helped provide a real platform for Pope. He only furthered this as he helped Bury to promotion in League Two, playing 22 times for the Shakers.

Charlton finally gave the no.1 spot to Pope in the 2015/16 season, he made 33 appearances for the Addicks but couldn't stop the club from being relegated from the Sky Bet Championship that season, as fans revolted against the club owners. That allowed the move for Pope to sign for the Premiership side, where he described it as a 'huge opportunity.'

Colchester have also completed the signings of Italian winger Simone Palombi and Bulgarian keeper Dimitar Mitov on frees. Palombi, 21, joins from Lazio after successful spells on loan at Serie B sides Ternana and Trapani Calcio, the winger scored six goals for Trapani last season from 34 games. Mitov, 20, joins after being released by Charlton this Summer.

Bournemouth Youngster Makes Loan Switch

Bournemouth youth defender Corey Jordan has completed a loan move to Colchester United for the season.

Colchester United have completed the loan signing of Corey Jordan for the season after he enjoyed a successful campaign with League One club Accrington Stanley last season. The defender missed just one game for Stanley last season and made a real impression for the side as he averaged above a 7 for the season in the ProZone ratings.

Jordan, 18, has been with the Cherries since 2006 and made his senior debut in a 3-2 loss against Preston North End in the EFL Cup, replacing full-back Tyrone Mings. Eddie Howe has labelled the defender 'a real talent' and was closely watching Jordan throughout his spell at Accrington.

Although largely inexperienced, Colchester manager Paddy McLaughlin has said he has high hopes for the defender this season, as he makes the step up from regular League One football to the Championship, similarly to the Irishman. 'I expect a lot from him, he was a real star for Accrington last season and in both meetings, he really stood out for me.'

'There has been a lot of interest in him, from not just us, but from other clubs in and around this division so it does show how widely sought after Corey is. I'm delighted to get him in and I have real high hopes for him this season, he definitely has talent and I'm sure he'll deliver once again this season.'

Schembri Joins Colchester

Maltese international Andre Schembri has joined Colchester United on a two-year-deal.

Andre Schembri has joined Colchester United on a free after leaving Portugese side Boavista this Summer. The forward has represented his country, Malta, 86 times since making his debut in 2006 against Japan in a friendly. He was also on the scoresheet in the 2-1 victory against Hungary later that year that ended the country's 13 year wait for a competitive victory.

Schembri, 31, has very much been a journeyman throughout his career, playing for his native sides of Hibernians and Marsaxlokk before playing for Eintracht Braunschweig, Jena, Austria Karten, Ferencváros, Panionios, Omonia (in two different spells), FSV Frankfurt and Boavista.

He has played just under 400 games for his many clubs, scoring 122 goals throughout his career and despite now entering his thirties, he has not lost his clinical touch. Schembri scored 15 goals in 30 appearances in his second spell at Omonia in the 2015/16 season, which attracted interest from Boavista and caused a premature end to his second spell which the Greek club.

In his first season with the Portuguese top flight club, his five goals in 21 appearances helped the club survive. However, he couldn't prevent Boavista's relegation to the second tier in the 2017/18 season and Schembri left the club, ending his account with 11 goals in 49 games.

It is unknown just how well Schembri will adapt to English football, the move to the Weston Homes Community Stadium will be his first time playing in the country and it is a risk, but one worth taking says chairman Robbie Cowling. 'He's a veteran, he's been all over Europe and produced the goods and even if it's his first time playing in a major league, it's a risk worth taking in my head.'

The Championship fixtures will be released this Friday and Colchester will learn who they'll be facing in their return to the division on 11th August. The club were last in the Championship back in the 2007/2008 season where they finished bottom by a comfortable margin.

Bamba Deal Confirmed

Ivorian defender Sol Bamba has agreed a deal to join Colchester United this afternoon.

Former Leeds United and Cardiff defender Sol Bamba has joined Colchester on a free transfer and has signed a two year deal with the U's. Bamba, 33, has made 44 appearances for the Ivory Coast since making his debut in 2008 with the Olympics squad and has been a strong presence since.

Bamba will be well know to a lot of people having played with Hibernian, Leicester, Leeds and Cardiff in his career since coming through the ranks at PSG in 2004. He made just one appearance for the now French giants, before making the move to Dunfermline on a free, making 39 appearances for the club over a two year spell.

His career has also taken him to the likes of Trabzonspor in Turkey, where he played 27 times in two years for the club and also Palermo in Italy, however he made just one appearance for the club before being loaned out and then sold to Leeds.

The defender has made 270 appearances in his career and the commanding center half has said he is looking forward to making even more at Colchester this season. 'Sadly for me, Cardiff didn't really work out last season. I made just nine appearances and that wasn't good enough for me so I needed to find a team that could promise me more game time.'

'I think I was in a similar position to Grant Leadbitter, I think his move here has provided some sort of inspiration to do the same as this club has something very special about it at the moment and something I want to be a part of,' Bamba said.

Some very good signings mate, Schembri could be a hidden gem for you and Bamba will add some real steel to your defence in what will be a tough Championship campaign
Looks like the squad is in shape to at least survive the first season and maybe finish mid-table.
Justice- That's now the official chant for Bamba.

Griffin- Either a surprise gem or a total flop :P Luckily he is on low wages, regardless.

De Magere- I'll settle for anything above the relegation zone to be honest!

Sky Bet Championship: Opening Day Fixtures

Aston Villa vs Wolves

Brentford vs MK Dons

Brighton vs Wigan

Bristol City vs Reading

Cardiff vs Barnsley

Colchester vs Birmingham

Derby vs Norwich

Fulham vs Sheffield Wednesday

Middlesbrough vs Leeds

Nottingham Forest vs Ipswich

Preston vs Hull

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