First half goals from Jordan Shipley and Sam McCallum secured the Sky Blues a place in the second round of the Emirates FA Cup after a dominant victory against Colchester United.
Shipley blasted home the opener after 11 minutes before McCallum’s dangerous delivery on 26 minutes curled all the way in as City controlled the game from start to finish.
The win means Mark Robins side have now extended their unbeaten run to six games in all competitions.
The Sky Blues created the first chance of the match on seven minutes when Jordan Shipley’s low curling effort, from the right-hand side of the penalty area, was pushed away by Colchester keeper Dean Gerken low down to his right.
Soon after, City deservedly took the lead when Zain Westbrooke played a delightful lofted through ball to the on running Shipley who blasted an effort past Gerken at his near post.
The hosts responded with their first attempt of the game on 25 minutes as Cohen Bramall’s 25-yard effort went just past Ben Wilson’s right-hand post.
City doubled their advantage moments later, when McCallum’s delicious cross from a free-kick on the right, from more than 35-yards out, curled all the way into the bottom left corner.
The Sky Blues continued to dominate and almost found a third goal just before the half-hour mark when Westbrooke’s long-range effort was tipped around the post for a corner.
From the resulting set-piece, Amadou Bakayoko headed narrowly wide, from close range, as City searched for more goals.
Bakayoko had another chance to add to City’s total just before half-time but could only fire into the side netting after controlling McCallum’s long pass forward.
HALF-TIME: COLCHESTER UNITED 0-2 SKY BLUES
Picking up from where he left off at the end of the first half, Bakayoko was again involved at the start of the second period firing a shot over the crossbar around 20-yards from goal.
City continued to pressure the Colchester defence and created another opening on the hour mark when captain Liam Kelly curled an effort narrowly wide of the left-hand post from the edge of the penalty area.
Minutes later, a clever reverse pass from Shipley found Westbrooke racing through into the penalty area with the midfielder then cutting inside of his man before striking an effort against the base of the post.
The Sky Blues carved United open again on 67 minutes, when Shipley cut the ball back for Bakayoko inside the penalty area, with the striker’s effort well-blocked when heading towards goal.
City did eventually manage to put the ball into the net for a third time, only for the linesman to rule out Shipley’s well-placed strike for offside.
Substitute Callum O’Hare almost added City’s third with eight minutes left to play, when he connected with Westbrooke’s ball across the face of goal but scuffed his effort into the hands of Gerken from close range.
Despite failing to add more goals to their tally, the Sky Blues turned in a masterful performance at the JobServe Community Stadium and deservedly booked their place in the second round of the competition.
FULL-TIME: COLCHESTER UNITED 0-2 SKY BLUES
Goals: Shipley 11’, McCallum 26’
Yellows: Jackson 34’, Kelly 57’, Eastman 83’
Attendance: 2,919 (678 away)
Colchester United XI: Dean Gerken (GK), Ryan Jackson, Tom Eastman, Luke Prosser (C), Cohen Bramall, Brandon Comley, Ben Stevenson, Courtney Senior (Norris 70’), Kwame Poku (Sowunmi 46’), Callum Harriott (Gambin 54’), Frank Nouble
Unused Subs: Ethan Ross (GK), Brendan Sarpong-Wiredu, Tom Lapslie, Jevani Brown
Sky Blues XI: Ben Wilson (GK), Fankaty Dabo, Dom Hyam, Kyle McFadzean, Michael Rose, Sam McCallum, Zain Westbrooke (Eccles 90’+2), Liam Kelly (C), Liam Walsh, Jordan Shipley (O’Hare 74’), Amadou Bakayoko
Unused Subs: Cian Tyler (GK), Declan Drysdale, Brandon Mason, Gervane Kastaneer, Will Bapaga