COLCHESTER United will be coming up against a familiar face when they take on West Ham United under-21s tonight.

The Hammers youngsters are managed by Dmitri Halajko, who served a number of roles during a ten-year stint at the U’s.

Halajko spent ten years connected to Colchester between 2000 and 2010.

He worked as their Centre of Excellence Manager/Community Manager and leading the Colchester United Ladies team was also among his roles.

Halajko also had a hand in bringing through a number of talented young U’s players.

He left the JobServe Community Stadium in 2010 to take up a Regional Manager position at the Football Association.

He was there for two years, before taking up the position of U12-U16 Lead Phase Coach and U16 Head Coach at Norwich City.

He spent five years at Carrow Road in total, progressing to a role of Professional Development Lead Phase Coach and U21s Head Coach with the Canaries while combining that with a position of Youth Coach Educator and Youth Module Tutor with the FA.

Halajko moved on in 2017 to Leicester City, where he headed up Player Development for the Premier League Club for two years.

He took in his current role as West Ham United’s U23s and PDP Lead Coach in the summer of 2019.

Halajko led the Hammers under-21 side to victory in their opening EFL Trophy Group match against Southend United.

He will be hoping to steer them to another win tonight, when he returns to one of his former clubs.