Chris' caring side
COLCHESTER star Chris Iwelumo today showed his caring, compassionate side - the one Ipswich fans definitely won't witness on Saturday.The U's leading league scorer, pictured, spared a thought for Jason De Vos, who will miss the eagerly awaited derby clash after cracking a bone in his foot during Monday's training session at Playford Road.
By Mel Henderson
COLCHESTER star Chris Iwelumo today showed his caring, compassionate side - the one Ipswich fans definitely won't witness on Saturday.
The U's leading league scorer, pictured, spared a thought for Jason De Vos, who will miss the eagerly awaited derby clash after cracking a bone in his foot during Monday's training session at Playford Road.
But the ruthless professional in Iwelumo quickly emerged as he added: “Jason is probably the toughest opponent I have faced in my career so I'm glad he won't be playing at the weekend.”
That's quite a compliment to absentee De Vos and it was over 90 minutes in the corresponding fixture at Layer Road back in September that 28-year-old Iwelumo formed the opinion.
He said: “To be honest, when I saw that big Jason was injured I initially felt sorry for him.
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“Then I realised he'd be missing against us and thought to myself 'That'll do for me'.
“We had quite a battle at Layer Road a few months back. I'm quite a big lad myself but Jason is a real man mountain, he's so big, strong and powerful.
“It was the first time I'd played against him and I really couldn't believe his physique.
“I found it a problem getting the better of him, both when we were attacking and again when we were defending at set plays and he was the one I had to mark.
“If I'm honest he probably just edged it and while I don't want to be disrespectful to the lads I'll be up against on Saturday I'm definitely not going to miss Jason.”
Scots-born Iwelumo has shared 28 goals this season with strike partner Jamie Cureton, one of whose came in the recent FA Cup defeat at Barnet.
Their impressive scoring record has helped the U's into the Championship play-off zone and Colchester will go into Saturday's game nine points clear of Town.
Iwelumo added: “We have definitely made our home games count - that has been our big plus - but away from home we haven't done as well as we would have liked.
“We've tended to get a bit pegged in at some grounds so we'll be making sure it doesn't happen this time.”
The U's goal ace is an Ipswich resident - he could probably jog to Portman Road in less than ten minutes - and has seen Town in action on a number of occasions.
He said: “I've been at a few games as a spectator and I'm looking forward to getting out there and playing, just as everyone at Colchester is.
“I'll have my wife and children there and while I always want to win there's an extra special reason for wanting to come away with three points this week.
“Ever since I moved into my new house my next door neighbour and I have been winding each other up.
“He's an Ipswich season ticket holder and I know what to expect if we come away with nothing from Portman Road!”