Colchester United v Carlisle United – Sky Bet League Two – JobServe Community Stadium – Saturday (3pm) – Preview
Colchester United’s recent Sky Bet League Two revival hit a blip at high-flying Mansfield Town. However, Ray Crawford insisted that the U’s have displayed enough evidence to suggest they have turned the corner following an otherwise indifferent campaign.
The U’s provided a battling performance at the One Call Stadium before going down by the odd goal in three: “Mansfield are a very good side but we gave them something to think about,” the former U’s frontman told Yellow Sport.
“We stayed in the game and made it difficult for them. We mustn’t run before we can walk. We are not promotion material, but we can start being a little more ambitious and looking up the table.
“Of course, we have work to do. We need to pull clear of the bottom two. But the squad looks a little more balanced at the moment. Alan Judge and Freddie Sears appear to be on their game. Overall, we look a lot more capable.
Colchester host fellow strugglers, Carlisle United on Saturday: “It’s a must-win game,” Crawford added.
“They are in no form at all and find themselves in all sorts of trouble. We need another convincing performance and three big points to put further daylight between us.
“Carlisle seem to be similar to Colchester. The expectation is for them to do a lot better, but for one reason or another, they find themselves towards the bottom of the league.
“They have lost four on the trot and haven’t won a league match in six attempts. I would imagine confidence isn’t high. We must be ruthless.
“We are playing a little further forward and using all the pitch just now. It’s important to continue that and press from the start. An early Colchester goal will open the game up and offer a chance to expose them further.
“We might have to grind it out for a bit, but I expect us to get the right results and keep climbing the table.”
Ray Crawford’s prediction: Colchester United 2-0 Carlisle United
Jeevesie’s prediction: Colchester United 2-1 Carlisle United