Izzet aims to make up for lost time

KEM Izzet is off the mark for 2008, after a lengthy goal drought, but he wants to make up for lost time during the final couple of months of the year.

Carl Marston

KEM Izzet is off the mark for 2008, after a lengthy goal drought, but he wants to make up for lost time during the final couple of months of the year.

Izzet rifled home a first-time shot, from Clive Platt's flick-on, during Tuesday night's 2-1 home defeat at the hands of promotion-chasing Millwall.

Now the Colchester United midfielder wants to boost his goal-tally, and at the same time help to grab that elusive first win at the new Weston Homes Community Stadium. The U's will hope to achieve that aim, at the seventh time of asking, against visiting Carlisle United on Saturday.

“I was due a goal. In fact, I'm due a few.” admitted Izzet.

“I'm trying to be more of a goal threat. I was only a whisker away with a shot that I hit cleanly early on in the game. I'm consciously trying to get forward more, although it's not really about me. It's about the team.

Most Read

“David Perkins may have made an error for their first goal (scored by Lewis Grabban), which he's owned up to, but he's been outstanding for us this season. He immediately picked himself up again and I thought he was brilliant for the rest of the game.

“We should certainly have got something out of this game. We were punished for making two silly mistakes.

“I thought we played a lot better than of late. In fact, I thought we were better than Millwall by a mile. They had two shots and scored two goals, that's the worrying thing for us,” added Izzet.

The experienced Izzet, who is now the longest-serving player on the U's books, was recalled to the starting line-up by new manager Paul Lambert after appearing as a substitute in last Saturday's 2-1 win at Stockport County.

Before Tuesday night, the 28-year-old had not scored during 2008. In fact, it was more than a year since the ex-Charlton trainee had found the back of the net - in the 4-2 home win over QPR on October 3, 2007, when Geraint Williams was the U's manager and Mick Harford was the caretaker boss of Rangers.

Izzet believes that more goals will come, and is excited about the future under new manager Lambert.

“The gaffer has stamped his authority on things. He's making a difference,” insisted Izzet.

“The tempo is higher and we're getting in people's faces. Al the vibes are positive. He doesn't want to see any sad faces around the place.

“I thought the fans were good, but we gave them something to cheer by pushing on in the game. It will be great when the place is full,” added Izzet. The Community Stadium was just over half-full (attendance of 5,506) against the Lions.

Club record signing Steven Gillespie missed the Millwall game due to a hamstring problem. The U's striker has been dogged by various injuries since his summer move from Cheltenham, in addition to serving a three-match ban.

Manager Lambert confirmed: “Steven (Gillespie) did not play because of his hamstring. It's too early to say whether he will be fit for the weekend.”

Become a Supporter

This newspaper has been a central part of community life for many years. Our industry faces testing times, which is why we're asking for your support. Every contribution will help us continue to produce local journalism that makes a measurable difference to our community.

Become a Supporter