Colchester United were beaten 3-1 by promotion-chasing Peterborough United this afternoon, in an eventful game at the Weston Homes Community Stadium.

U's goalkeeper Sam Walker denied Conor Washington from the penalty spot in the fourth minute, after Sammie Szmodics had been ruled to have handled Kyle Vassell’s free-kick.

Gavin Massey and Ben Gordon were both denied by Peterborough goalkeeper Ben Alnwick in quick succession after that.

But the U's fell behind in the 20th minute lead when Washington raced onto Christian Burgess’s pass to score.

And Kgosi Ntlhe doubled Peterborough's lead five minutes later when he finished well after Joe Newell had caused the home side problems in the area.

Walker twice denied Vassell after that but to their credit, Colchester kept going.

They were desperately unlucky not to score in the second half when Alex Gilbey's fine strike thumped against the underside of the crossbar and substitute Sanchez Watt made a big impact when he came on.

Sears then missed a glorious chance but a minute later he exchanged passes with Watt before firing home to get Colchester back in the game.

But Peterborough went 3-1 up with 13 minutes to go through Jermaine Anderson, who converted from five yards from Washington’s low cross.

Peterborough goalscorer Ntlhe was sent off for a second bookable offence with nine minutes remaining to finish the game with ten men, but the U's fell to a fourth successive league defeat.

For five pages of coverage of the U's game with Peterborough, see Monday's Daily Gazette.