Massey targets revenge victory

Gavin Massey goes off after being shown the red card at MK Dons last November

Gavin Massey goes off after being shown the red card at MK Dons last November

COLCHESTER United’s fateful trip to MK Dons, at the back end of last November, was a low point for both the club and Gavin Massey in particular.

But the U’s, and winger Massey, have since turned a big corner, and a revenge victory over their Milton Keynes visitors this afternoon would be a giant stride towards achieving League One safety.

The U’s crashed to a 5-1 defeat at MK Dons on November 24, the second of a club record nine straight defeats, and Massey was sent off for the first time in his career, having only been on the pitch for 21 minutes as a substitute.

They were dark days – the U’s were slowly sliding towards the relegation zone, and Massey had to serve a three-match suspension.

But roll on four months and Joe Dunne’s men, on the back of just one defeat in their last six games, are on the right track to pull well clear of the relegation zone.

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Massey has certainly learnt from that bad experience at MK Dons.

“My red card was just one of those things. I have definitely learnt from it,” insisted Massey.

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“I had just come on as a substitute, but still personally to this day I think it was a harsh red card.

“I had meetings with the gaffer and had my three-game suspension, which was time for me to reflect.

“I’ve since come back, and got back in the team. I don’t think I’ve looked back.

“There’s no way that I would want a repeat of that again. I’ve put it behind me and hopefully I can bag a goal this weekend,” added Massey.

The ex-Watford attacker is happy with the way that he, and the team, have been playing over the last few weeks.

He also recognises the return of Jabo Ibehre, after a three-match suspension, as a big boost for the U’s ahead of today’s clash.

“After our recent good performances on the road, when we’ve been different class, it will be nice to be back home,” continued Massey.

“We have to crack on now and pick up those points at home. Then we should be cruising, and we should be fine.

“Jabo (Ibehre) coming back is a massive boost for us. That has been the case ever since he came to the club.

“You could see the difference he makes at Stevenage (start of this month). He was a match winner that day, getting us the two goals (2-0 victory), at a period when we needed the win. That was a massive three points for us.

“Jabo is a big-time player. I’m just glad to have him back and he’s relishing coming back.

“He was obviously disappointed with his red card (at Hartlepool), and he will want to put that behind him,” added Massey.

It will be a big occasion for Ibehre, who began this season at MK Dons and had a successful loan stint with the U’s, before making the move permanent at the end of January.

Massey, who was sent off for violent conduct at MK Dons, scored the opener in the U’s 2-2 draw at Coventry last week, and set up the second for Clinton Morrison in last Saturday’s 2-0 win at Bury.

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