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Kings of Anglia Issue 10 Magazine Offer

'It should feel like a cup final' - U's Szmodics ahead of MK Dons test

PUBLISHED: 06:00 27 April 2019

Sammie Szmodics cracks in a shot during the U's 2-0 home defeat to Oldham from three weeks ago. Picture: STEVE WALLER

Sammie Szmodics cracks in a shot during the U's 2-0 home defeat to Oldham from three weeks ago. Picture: STEVE WALLER

© Copyright Stephen Waller

Colchester United's leading scorer, Sammie Szmodics, remains confident that his home-town club will reach the play-offs.

Action from the last home match as Grimsby keeper James McKeown leaves Jake Hessenthaler to head Frankie Kent's overhead effort off the line.  The U's won 1-0. Picture: STEVE WALLERAction from the last home match as Grimsby keeper James McKeown leaves Jake Hessenthaler to head Frankie Kent's overhead effort off the line. The U's won 1-0. Picture: STEVE WALLER

The U's will almost certainly have to win their last two fixtures, at home to fourth-placed MK Dons this afternoon, and then away at champions Lincoln City next weekend, to stand a chance of making the top seven.

Szmodics believes that the U's can claim six points out of six, which would then require just a couple of results to go their way to ensure a place in the post-season play-offs.

“We are feeling very positive, which is the only way we can feel,” insisted Szmodics, who has been with the Essex club since the age of seven.

“We slipped up a bit at Yeovil (1-1 draw on Easter Monday), but it was a good point, not a bad point, because of the sending-off (Dillon Barnes dismissal).

Frank Nouble celebrates his first-half goal in the U's 1-0 win over Grimsby last weekend.  Nouble should lead the front-line today. Picture: STEVE WALLERFrank Nouble celebrates his first-half goal in the U's 1-0 win over Grimsby last weekend. Nouble should lead the front-line today. Picture: STEVE WALLER

“And what better two games to play, than against MK Dons and Lincoln? I think we are playing well as a team, and we're getting opportunities.

“It should be a very entertaining game. We have something to play for, and so do MK Dons. We must just focus on beating them, and then see where we are in the table at 5pm.

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“Of course I would rather have wrapped up a play-off place already, but I'm still confident that we will get through to the play-offs,” added Szmodics.

Ethan Ross, who is line to make his full debut for the U's today. Picture: RICHARD BLAXALLEthan Ross, who is line to make his full debut for the U's today. Picture: RICHARD BLAXALL

The U's 23-year-old attacking midfielder has scored 12 goals this season, 11 of them in the league, but has not hit the back of the net in his last eight appearances.

“I have not scored for a few games now, although I've had a couple of assists and I think that I'm playing well,” said Szmodics.

“But I'd love to score this weekend, in front of a big crowd, with the stadium set to be decked out in blue-and-white.

“The fans have all been behind us, from day dot, and the stadium should be rocking this weekend.

“We've had our ups and downs this season, but we want to push ourselves over the line.

“It should feel like a cup final, but that's been the mentality for the last seven weeks now.”

The U's are two points and one place adrift of Exeter City, who currently occupy the last play-off berth. The Grecians face a tough test at home to play-off rivals Oldham today, and then end the season away at promotion-chasing Forest Green Rovers.

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