Elito vows to fight for his place at Colchester

MEDY Elito has vowed to stay on and fight for his place at Colchester United.

MEDY Elito has vowed to stay on and fight for his place at Colchester United.

The tricky winger was hailed as a top young prospect when he progressed through the Essex club’s junior ranks to sign professional forms as a teenager almost three years ago.

However, despite going on to represent England at Under-19 level, the Zaire-born player has found his first team chances at the Essex club limited over the last three seasons and ended up finishing the recent campaign on loan at League Two side Cheltenham Town.

Playing mainly on the left of midfield, but also as a supporting striker at times, the 20-year-old scored three times in 11 appearances to help The Robins narrowly avoid relegation from the Football League.

The success of the temporary switch inevitably led Cheltenham boss Mark Yates to make some early inquiries as to whether he could get the tricky wideman back at Whaddon Road.

However, Elito – who has made just eight starts in three seasons at the U’s – has rejected the overtures, instead deciding to focus all his energies on finally making a breakthrough at his boyhood club.

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“The spell at Cheltenham has given me a great deal of confidence and I know I can make it as a Colchester player now,” said Elito, who has a season left to run on his current contract.

“I had a great time at Cheltenham, but I want to play at the highest possible level and I think I am good enough for Colchester.”

Despite handing him just four late substitute appearances last season, manager Aidy Boothroyd was always quick to compliment Elito in press conferences and confirmed towards the end of the season that they youngster was very much in his future plans.

Elito’s situation is a little more blurred now that Boothroyd has left for Coventry City, however he still remains determined to win over whoever the new man in the U’s hotseat turns out to be.

“The gaffer leaving has been particularly hard for me because he had just been telling me that I would be in the team next season,” said Elito.

“Everything was really positive, but these things happen in football, he’s gone now and I’ve just got to try and impress whoever comes in.

“I felt I was just hitting my stride as the season ended and now I just can’t wait to get back to pre-season (June 28) and hit the ground running.”

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