‘Let’s give it a real go’ – Colchester United boss John McGreal

Liam Mandeville, who should make his U's debut against Newport County this afternoon. Picture: ANDRE

Liam Mandeville, who should make his U's debut against Newport County this afternoon. Picture: ANDREW ROE/AHPHIX LTD - Credit: Andrew Roe/AHPIX LTD

Colchester United boss, John McGreal, wants his team to begin a “big push” during the last 16 games, in the quest for a League Two play-off berth.

The U’s are now a distant seven points adrift of the top seven, following the midweek fixtures which saw wins for promotion rivals Lincoln, Swindon, Coventry and Wycombe.

But the boost of three new loan signings, on transfer deadline day on Thursday, could give the U’s that needed edge to launch a sustained bid for promotion over the final three months.

Striker Liam Mandeville, signed on loan from Doncaster Rovers, could go straight into the starting line-up against visiting Newport County today.

Midfielder Ben Stevenson, recruited on loan from Wolves just hours after he had completed a permanent move from Coventry, should also make his U’s debut against the Welshmen.

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The third new face, winger Olamide Shodipo, is carrying a slight injury, so the QPR loanee will either be rested or perhaps named amongst the substitutes.

McGreal enthused: “We have given ourselves targets to hit over the last 16 games – so let’s all get together and give it a big go.

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“We’ve drawn a lot of games, that’s been our main problem. That’s been our blip in recent games.

“But as well as the new lads, we have players like Ryan (Innniss) and Luke Prosser back as well, after their injuries.

“They have put the foot on the pedal in training, and these boys now want to play. They are fit and ready.

“So the boys with the shirts have got to watch their backs, because not only have we brought in three new faces, but we have other boys coming back.

“The Squad is developing now for the big push. We are on 43 points, which is just one off where we were last year, and we have 16 game left, which a good chunk of games.

“So let’s give it a real go and get the fans behind us.

“We certainly can’t put in the first-half performance we did against Grimsby (last home match) when it was no where near good enough. We need to be on things right from the first minute. We want to get back to that.

“The transfers show we mean business for the rest of the season. We will be giving it a go, because we have good competition for places,” added McGreal.

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