As published in the Essex County Standard/Colchester Gazette and copied here with their kind permission

"Banter with Burns" 

3 January 2020

I hope you had a wonderful Christmas, and Happy New Year to you all. With so much going on it is often hard to keep track of the U’s football, but if it helps you get back on track, we last played on a Wednesday and tomorrow is Saturday, so it is back to normal with a trip to Stevenage.


So, what did Santa bring the U’s and their supporters? A very good 3 points at a rain-soaked Orient helped in part by a brace from Theo Robinson, a player who seems pretty certain to be with us for the rest of the season now, which is no bad thing for our promotion ambitions. Then we had a battling and bruising home draw against high flying Exeter where both teams had chances to win the game. Let’s be fair, they are a good team and that’s why they are second place in the table, however if Harry Pell had got his angle of elevation slightly lower then no one would have complained.


Onto the first day of 2020, and a potential banana skin was avoided against Crawley. I feared they would upset our fine unbeaten run because the U’s gave a lot on Sunday and I suspected that their tanks might be running dry, as was proven by a flat first half. Good to see the U’s rally and take the lead, although disappointing to see them fall for the sucker punch and a slightly dubious equaliser.


In previous seasons when we have not been at our best, Crawley would have beaten us, but not so this season. There remains an inner strength to the squad despite the injuries, and the U’s remain unbeaten and in sixth place. Yes, two points from the last couple of home games could have been much better, but equally we could be completely empty handed. Being hard to beat and reducing the error count will be key to our success.


It will be good to get back to playing day normality tomorrow as the U’s continue into a busy January schedule of fixtures. Hopefully they’ll get their rhythm and energy back for what will not be an easy game at the bottom placed team. 3 points would be brilliant.


For me, if I was allowed an adjustment or two, I would like to see Poku back in the team, and whilst acknowledging that we have a plethora of lefties in the squad, I do prefer to see someone with a working right foot attacking on that side. Anyway, good luck to the U’s tomorrow and thanks for your support if you’re able to go.


Up the U’s!