U’s boss has no plans to rock the boat with new signings

U's boss John McGreal, who is in no hurry to make any new signings in the January transfer window. P

U's boss John McGreal, who is in no hurry to make any new signings in the January transfer window. Picture: STEVE WALLER - Credit: Picture: Steve Waller

The transfer window opens again next month, but there is no guarantee that Colchester United boss John McGreal will be recruiting during that hectic month of January.

The U’s premature exit from the FA Cup, at the hands of non-league Oxford City at the first hurdle, certainly weakened the Essex club’s potential to make new signings during the transfer window.

Of course a lack of income from the Cup does not necessarily mean that McGreal’s hands will be tied, in terms of signing new players – U’s owner Robbie Cowling never budgets for an FA Cup run – but the imminent return of several long-term injury victims might leave McGreal in the pleasant situation of having no need to bolster his squad with any new faces.

Sean Murray and Kurtis Guthrie are close to first-team returns, while Luke Prosser and Brennan Dickenson should also be back in first-team contention by early next year.

So if the U’s can steer clear of any long-term new injuries, then McGreal’s squad is already looking strong enough to mount a promotion push, especially if Brandon Hanlan’s loan stay from Charlton can be extended beyond mid-January.

The other question marks surround whether front-runner Sanmi Odelusi will be offered a new contract (his short-term current deal expires next month) and whether Portsmouth loanee Nicke Kabamba remains for longer – Kabamba is not even featuring in the 18-man match-day squad at the moment.

“You’ve got to look at budgets,” admitted McGreal.

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“Being knocked out of the FA Cup has killed us really. It’s stopped us doing what we would have liked to have done.

“But we have boys coming back from long-term injuries, so there is no need to do anything at the minute.

“It’s a continual assessment, as you know. We could lose two or three players in a heart-beat at this football club, as has bee proved from my time and before then.

“I’ve not really made any decisions for January. There are one or two might-bes, but I’m just going to keep things as they are. We don’t want to rock the boat anyway.

“The boys are performing particularly well, so I don’t want to start going in there and doing things which will upset things.”

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