Everything to play for as Colchester United bid to end their poor away run at doomed O’s
Nothing other than a victory will suffice for Colchester United, at already-relegated Leyton Orient this afternoon.
The U’s simply have to beat the doomed O’s to ensure that they are still in with a fighting chance of reaching the League Two play-offs, going into the final weekend of the season.
A deficit of three points and four places is not usually too much to make up, but it is when there are just two rounds of matches remaining.
Even if the U’s do record their first away win of 2017, at Brisbane Road, and follow that up by beating lowly Yeovil Town next Saturday, the odds are still slightly against them finishing in the top seven, due to the high number of play-off rivals.
But John McGreal’s men will be giving it a real go, and they certainly deserve huge credit for even being in this position, after their dreadful luck with injuries this season.
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“We just have to try and win both matches, and just worry about ourselves,” confirmed McGreal, who is approaching the end of his first season on the U’s hot seat.
McGreal continued: “This weekend promises to be a great game. We still have a lot to play for, while Leyton Orient have pride to play for, in front of their own fans.
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“We’ve had some indifferent results and performances away from home this year, but there’s been a good feel about the club this week.
“We should have taken all three points from our last away game at Morecambe (conceded a late goal in a 1-1 draw), while at Notts County (3-1 defeat) we were poor, although their first goal was offside.
“We’ve been poor in some away games, but deserved more in others, and the players deserve great credit for getting themselves into this good position after all the injuries,” added McGreal.
The U’s have not won any of their last nine away games, with four draws and five defeats.
But despite that poor haul of just four points from a possible 27 on the road, the U’s terrific home form – just two defeats in 14 games at the Community Stadium – has kept them in the play-off race.
They would certainly start as warm favourites to beat Yeovil on home turf next Saturday, but first they have to end their travel woes in East London.