Dunne plotting a familiar path

Joe Dunne believes the experience from last season's relegation escape will help his Colchester side after a 0-0 draw at Crewe.

Colchester went closest to victory at Gresty Road when Freddie Sears hit the woodwork, but Dunne's side have now won just one of their last eight games.

Dunne said: "We did enough to win the game as we hit the post, which sums up the chances we've had recently but not taken.

"But we didn't want to leave ourselves too open so we came with a game-plan.

"If we weren't going to win it we needed to make sure we didn't lose it.

"But we got into some good shooting positions without hitting the target.

"This will give us a great deal of confidence going into the last two games.

"One win out of two will do it, but it's going to be difficult for us at Brentford.

"There are three or four teams who could go down and all of them have difficult games, but we've got the experience (of staying up) from last year to get us through."

A nervous first-half produced little in the way of excitement, save an effort from Jabo Ibehre which flashed across goal.

Crewe responded with young midfielder Liam Nolan letting fly from 20 yards to force a block from Us goalkeeper Sam Walker.

But Colchester were the slicker side and young Alex goalkeeper Ben Garratt needed to get behind Gavin Massey's low drive, while he also did well to keep out a low effort from Sears at the near post.

A mistake by Nolan was nearly punished with Ibehre breaking clear in the 66th-minute and slipping in Sears, whose first-time shot cannoned off the post.

Uche Ikpeazu had his head in his hands with 15 minutes left when the Crewe striker directed his header the wrong side of the post after an inviting cross from Moore appeared to have set him up in front of goal.