Colchester boss Joe Dunne admitted he was surprised by Port Vale's team selection after guiding his side to a 1-0 win.
Gavin Massey netted the U's second-half winner to make it back-to-back league wins against a cautious Vale side.
Dunne said: "It was an interesting selection by Port Vale.
"When we saw their team sheet, it took us a little bit by surprise.
"We expected one or two changes, but he played a pretty defensive team, which was good for us.
"We were excited about it because it was a great opportunity for us to play our way and our game.
"I thought we moved the ball really well and moved them out of shape a bit, but they had good players to come off the bench.
"There's always a threat when you're only winning 1-0, but we saw it out.
"I felt that we started the game exceptionally well.
"With the team I picked, the onus was on the front four to create and I thought that we saw that in the first 30 minutes or so.
"All we were short of were a couple more goals, but overall I was really pleased."