New Southampton manager Nigel Adkins was left frustrated and still searching for his first win as a stubborn Colchester side ground out a goalless draw at St Mary's.
Southampton have now gone more than 450 minutes without scoring a goal, although their efforts were not helped by a fine display from Colchester keeper Mark Cousins.
Cousins denied last season's League One top scorer Rickie Lambert as Saints desperately sought a winner.
Cousins first reacted sharply on the hour to dive low to his left and push away a Lambert volley and, in a hectic climax not in keeping with the rest of the game, he again thwarted Lambert in quick succession from free kicks.
Southampton were awarded two free-kicks in injury time which fell within Lambert's range, and on both occasions the striker curled his kick around the wall only for Cousins to go full-length to claw away the shots.
Southampton dominated play but could not break down Colchester's stubborn resistance, and the Us almost sneaked a winner themselves when substitute Kayode Odejayi set up Ashley Vincent, who saw his shot smothered by Saints keeper Kelvin Davis.
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