Colchester United’s new “steely determination on the road”

U's boss John McGreal shows his frustration after his side concede a late penalty during Tuesday nig

U's boss John McGreal shows his frustration after his side concede a late penalty during Tuesday night's 2-2 draw at a very misty Grimsby Town. Picture: RICHARD BLAXALL - Credit: Richard Blaxall / Pagepix

Colchester United may not have won, but their boss John McGreal was very impressed with the “steely determination” which accompanied their 2-2 draw at Grimsby Town on Tuesday night.

The U’s were within just a few minutes of recording what would have been only their second away win of 2017, when leading 2-1 at a misty Blundell Park.

But Sam Jones’ 89th minute penalty denied them a couple of points, with both sides still committed to going for a winner during stoppage time.

At least the solitary point at Grimsby ended a miserable run of four straight away defeats, at the start of this season, leading into this Saturday’s trip to Yeovil.

“We are having to keep changing the team around, whether it be because of injuries or suspensions,” rued McGreal.

“But I could sense we had a steely determination about us, and we were determined not to get beaten. Hopefully, we can build on that in future weeks.

“Grimsby is a tough place to come, especially as they had done well at home of late, and Yeovil is another tough place to go.

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“We do tend to get injuries, and we have bodies in-and-around the pitch we can bring in.

“It’s been a month of tough matches, but we have one or two who can come in when we need them. We now have to recover going into the Yeovil game,” added McGreal.

Defender Tom Eastman (sore hamstring) and midfielder Tom Lapslie (suspended) both missed the draw at Grimsby, which featured a sweet brace of goals for left-winger Kyel Reid, himself only just back from injury.

Unfortunately, the U’s suffered yet more injury woe, with leading scorer Sammie Szmodics being stretched off with a nasty leg injury within six minutes of his introduction as a substitute.

“We rested Sammie, but unfortunately he has an injury now,” continued McGreal.

“It’s the same leg that he did last season (suffered a broken leg at Crewe in March), so we need to look at that over the next 48 hours.

“Fingers crossed, it’s not too bad, but it’s still sore.”

Lapslie will be available for the trip to Huish Park, while Eastman will be hoping to recover from his sore hamstring to feature. Both striker Kurtis Guthrie and midfielder Craig Slater are also close to returns.

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