‘We are the only ones who can put it right’ – Colchester United winger Gavin Massey, ahead of Stevenage test

Gavin Massey, in action against Shrewsbury, the last time the U's won

Gavin Massey, in action against Shrewsbury, the last time the U's won - Credit: Sarah Lucy brown

Colchester United’s fate is still very much in their own hands, but they cannot afford another slip up at basement dwellers Stevenage today.

Winger Gavin Massey remains confident that the U’s can pull clear of trouble, and avoid the need for another last day escape act.

Four straight defeats have seen Joe Dunne’s men nosedive to the very edge of the relegation zone – they are only ahead of the bottom four on goal difference – so Massey knows that the tide has to turn quickly, starting at Broadhall Way.

“It’s a mental thing now, for us,” insisted Massey.

“Effort-wise, it’s been the same for the players all season, bar about one game where the guys did not show so much effort.

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“Mentally, we have a younger squad than last season. A few of those younger boys might be getting nervous without having that experience (of last season), so it’s up to the older ones to pull us out of this mess.

“The next three games are against teams in and around us, so they are massive games.

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“As it is still in our hands, it’s down to us to put things right, starting on Saturday.

“If we pick up points, we don’t need to worry about the team we have just played, but they are all fighting for their lives and it’s really tight at the bottom.

“We are the only ones who can put it right.”

Following today’s test at Stevenage, the U’s entertain fellow strugglers Oldham on Good Friday, and then travel to bottom four club Crewe Alexandra on Easter Monday.

Not surprisingly, Massey is hoping that the U’s can gather enough points in those three games, and in their last home fixture against promotion-chasing Brentford, to be safe from relegation going into their final day game at Walsall.

Last season, the U’s were plagued by relegation fears in the build-up to their last day challenge at Carlisle, a game they won 2-0 to secure their League One status for a sixth successive season.

“We’re hoping to get it right in these next few games, so it doesn’t all come down to the final day again,” confirmed Massey.

“We have that big-game experience from last season.

“I think last season was worse than this season. The way everyone was, coming off that nine-game losing run, it felt quite bad.

“But this season, it doesn’t feel that bad because we are playing well and creating lots of chances, like last weekend (2-1 defeat by Tranmere), when we created so many chances.

“We don’t feel the same pressure this season, but we need to win at Stevenage, otherwise we are right in it.”

Ex-Yeovil front-runner Massey, who is set to make his 97th career league appearance tomorrow, is not wasting too much time bemoaning the U’s lack of luck in recent games.

The 22-year-old knows that the U’s forwards, including himself, need to be more clinical in front of goal.

“We need to be more clinical, the lads know that,” continued Massey.

“The forwards have the responsibility to score the goals. The defenders have been doing really well, now it’s up to us forwards to put our chances away. We are all frustrated with where we are. It’s hurting us, where we are in the league.”

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