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Tuesday, March 27, 2007

Ex-QPR's Jamie Cureton & Holloway on Aiming to Sign Kevin Gallen

BBC - Colchester target big finish By Caroline Cheese

While Reading are this season's Premiership surprise package, the Championship honour must go to Colchester.

With seven games remaining, the U's still harbour a distant hope of sneaking into the play-offs and have every chance of finishing above East Anglia rivals Norwich and Ipswich.

You would have got very long odds on that when Geraint Williams' newly-promoted side began the season with four straight defeats in the league and an early Carling Cup exit at the hands of League Two outfit MK Dons.

Colchester's success is in no small part down to the little and large strikeforce of Chris Iwelumo (6ft 4in) and Jamie Cureton (5ft 6in).

Cureton has bagged 16 league goals, one more than his strike partner, and either could yet walk away with this season's golden boot.

"We just clicked really," Cureton said of his partnership with Iwelumo.

"It's your classic target man and little guy and we just seem to work well together. It's hard to explain."

Having one prolific striker, let alone two, is something of a novelty for Colchester fans, who have not seen a player score more than 20 goals for the club since Tony Adcock achieved the feat 22 years ago.

Cureton needs three more, while Iwelumo is another two behind.

"I did know about that before the season started," said Cureton. "It wasn't my target exactly but as the season has gone on, I've started thinking about it.

"Now I've set my sights on getting it and I'm confident I can get the three and hopefully a couple more as well."

Can Colchester make the play-offs?
Cureton's success at Colchester marks quite a dramatic change of fortune.

"This is probably the best form I've been in," commented the 31-year-old.

"I had really good spells at Bristol Rovers and then Reading in my early career but after I left Reading, it went a bit crazy.

"I went to Korea for a bit and then QPR, which I enjoyed but I didn't really settle, and then Swindon last year, which didn't go well."

Indeed, it was while he was at Swindon that Cureton enjoyed his first taste of life at Layer Road in a loan spell, before heading there permanently in the summer after the Robins were relegated to League Two.

Chopra (Cardiff) 21
Kamara (West Brom) 19
Rasiak (Southampton) 18
Earnshaw (Norwich) 17
Cureton (Colchester) 16
Howard (Derby) 16
Iwelumo (Colchester) 15

Cureton admits he never dreamed this season would go so well - either for him or the club.

"I am a bit surprised at how well it's gone," he revealed.

"We all went into the season with hopes of staying up but when we didn't start well, it was a shock to the system.

"But as the season has gone on, we've adjusted to this division and we feel we belong at this level now."

Having hit a high of sixth earlier in the season, Colchester have wobbled a little of late and, as of 27 March, they are eight points off the play-off places.

"We know there's still a chance of the play-offs," stated Cureton.

"If we can sneak in, it would be a massive opportunity but all we've said to ourselves is we'll try and win as many games as possible out of the last seven so we can end the season on a high.

"If that takes us into the play-offs, that's great. If not, we still know we will have had a very good season." BBC

CLUBCALL - Gallen race hots up - 2007-03-20

Ian Holloway says he is not surprised other clubs are keen on Kevin Gallen but hopes the player will stay with Plymouth.
Gallen is impressing during his loan spell at Home Park but newspaper reports have claimed that Leicester along with a host of other Championship clubs are also keen.
Holloway is not surprised by all the interest but thinks he is in the box seat when it comes to striking a deal. Clubcall

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