‘We have to get our confidence back from somewhere,’ – U’s boss McGreal after Exeter defeat

PUBLISHED: 12:38 17 March 2019 | UPDATED: 12:38 17 March 2019

U's boss John McGreal, whose side lost 3-0 at Exeter City yesterday. Picture: STEVE WALLER

U's boss John McGreal, whose side lost 3-0 at Exeter City yesterday. Picture: STEVE WALLER

© Copyright Stephen Waller

Colchester United boss, John McGreal, admitted that his side were “lacking in confidence” following another 3-0 defeat, this time at the hands of League Two play-off rivals Exeter City in Devon on Saturday.

But despite slipping to three 3-0 defeats in their last four games, the U’s are only one point and one place outside the play-offs, with eight fixtures remaining.

“We have to dress ourselves down, because this is a crucial part of the season,” insisted McGreal.

“We are still in with a great shout, and I think the results have gone well for us (over the weekend). We have just dropped out of the play-offs by a point.

“We have got to keep talking about that, trying to get this confidence back from somewhere.

“Getting a goal, that’s what it usually seems to be. More often than not, when we score then we tend to win games, and that is the crux of the matter at the moment,” added McGreal.

Matt Jay’s goal, out of the blue and on the stroke of half-time, changed the face of Saturday’s game, which before than had been rather drifting towards a stalemate.

“We have got beat, and we have lost three points again,” continued McGreal.

“You can obviously see that the boys are lacking in confidence, you can see that now when we do concede.

“Yet I’m really, really comfortable, up until the 45th minute, and then they score with a ball down the middle which we haven’t dealt with, and then he’s (Jay’s) put it in the top corner.

“Then you change your team-talk, because there was nothing in the game up until them.

“Tactically, we had nullified their threats and we were comfortable, but a ball down the middle has killed us.

“Sammie (Szmodics) should be scoring at the start of the second half – that should have been a goal.

“We had 15 shots in the second half and their keeper (Christy Pym) has made some fantastic saves, as he did against us earlier in the season (1-1 home draw in November). He seems to haunt us, their keeper.

“I’m looking at the 3-0 scoreline, and I’m thinking – ‘how did that happen?’

“Obviously the second goal has killed us because we were way, way in the ascendancy. Szmods and Mikael (Mandron) had chances, and then we concede another poor goal.”

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