Maybury to grasp big chance

ALAN Maybury, overlooked for the start of this season, is determined to take his chance with both hands against former club Leeds United this afternoon.

Carl Marston

ALAN Maybury, overlooked for the start of this season, is determined to take his chance with both hands against former club Leeds United this afternoon.

And the Colchester United defender couldn't have timed it much better, with the promise of a new manager to be appointed next week.

Furthermore, Maybury could not have picked a bigger game in which to make his first league start of the campaign, presuming that caretaker manager Joe Dunne chooses to select the 31-year-old for this sell-out clash.

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All the indications are that Maybury will line-up at right-back, as the obvious replacement for the injured Lee Beevers.

“I know that I have to grasp this chance, if I want to stay in the side,” admitted Maybury.

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“I was a regular last season, but I knew over the summer, with all the new signings, that I might not be starting. We then ended up winning 7-1 on the opening day (at Norwich), so there was never going to be many changes.

“Lee (Beevers) had done well and it's unfortunate for him that he has got injured. But it's a long season. You can end up missing 20 games, and yet still play in the other 30!” added Maybury.

Dublin-born Maybury left his native Ireland to start his professional career in England at Leeds United in the mid-1990s, at which point the Elland Road club were amongst the most successful in the land.

He played in some high-profile games, but spent most of the time playing second fiddle to regular right-back Gary Kelly.

And Maybury has no sympathy with Leeds' current plight, in the third tier of the Football League.

“Leeds will be thinking that they shouldn't be in this league, but they've been here for the last two years without getting up,” continued Maybury, who ironically made his U's debut in the 2-1 win at Leeds last December.

“At least this year they seem to have kept hold of most of their players, with the exception of (Fabian) Delph, who they lost for a lot of money (sold to Aston Villa for an undisclosed fee). They've also brought in Kevin Doyle (on loan from Coventry).

“Any match against Leeds is always a special occasion, but I was there a very long time ago while still a youngster. I have fond memories of my time there, but I have also had some decent success against them in the past.

“We were fighting near the top of the Premier League when I was there. Expectations are now growing, because the fans feel they should be getting out of this division, demanding that they win all their games.

“They have a backing of more than 20,000 fans for each home game, but as yet they haven't made that final step up to win promotion.

“And we have made more than a decent start to the season,” added Maybury.

Recruited as a free agent last December, after being released by Leicester City, Maybury went on to play 24 games on the trot under Paul Lambert's regime.

But he was stuck on the bench for the start of this term, with summer signing Beevers, from Lincoln City, getting the nod at right back.

Football moves on apace, and while Lambert's shock resignation to take up the job at Norwich has left the club without a permanent manager, Beevers' long term shoulder injury has given Maybury the chance for a run in the team.

“We are all fighting for our places in the team, and we can't wait to see who the manager will be,” continued Maybury.

“We are always hearing rumours, and bits of information from other players and our agents. But we make sure that it doesn't affect us on the pitch.

“I suppose it can be unsettling, because different managers have different ideas, but Joe Dunne has done a terrific job.”

Maybury is also looking forward to playing in front of a potential capacity crowd for the first time at the Community Stadium. The record attendance for a U's game at their new home is the 9,559 for the visit of Leeds last April.

“I'd rather be playing in front of a big crowd, than just one man and his dog,” insisted Maybury.

“We didn't do ourselves any favours last year, what with winning nearly all our away games, and losing most of our home games.

“But we've had good support since the start of this season, and there should be a full house.”

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