Anthony Wordsworth scored for the third successive home game as Colchester edged past 10-man Walsall 1-0.
The game changed just after the half-hour mark when Walsall defender Andy Butler was adjudged to have brought down winger Michail Antonio in the penalty area and was dismissed, resulting in Wordsworth slotting in from the spot.
Colchester had the better of the first half and created all of the chances. Antonio drilled a low shot just wide and Walsall goalkeeper Jimmy Walker saved Wordsworth's free-kick, before denying Ian Henderson.
Walker denied Ben Coker just before half-time and Kayode Odejayi headed over from a great position early in the second half, before being foiled by Walker seconds later.
The Saddlers appealed for a penalty midway through the second half when Colchester defender Magnus Okuonghae appeared to handle in the area.
Walker made a superb save at full-stretch to keep out Odejayi's close-range header with 12 minutes to go, as Colchester ended a run of four league games without a win.
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