Chris Porter has stressed it is vital Colchester United keep their squad together, this summer.

The U’s skipper is one of ten players currently mulling over fresh terms offered to them by the League Two club.

George Elokobi, Tom Eastman and Richard Brindley, who all played their part in helping Colchester finish a point off the play-offs, are among the out-of-contract stars the U’s want to keep hold of, with boss John McGreal warning that their players may be courted by other clubs, this summer.

Porter, who finished the campaign as the U’s top scorer with 16 goals, told the Daily Gazette that he would be happy to re-sign for the club providing the terms are right.

And he believes Colchester can go into next season feeling optimistic - providing they keep their best players at the Weston Homes Community Stadium.

Porter told the Daily Gazette: “It’s important that the manager tries to keep all of the players who were here this season together - if the club can keep those players here, I think we’ll go into next season with a lot of confidence.

“We produced some really good attacking play this season especially at home, where our record is one of the best in the country in all divisions.

“It’s been a good team to play in and I think it’s been good for people to watch.

“I’ve had friends and family watching our matches and they’ve really enjoyed the games, so the fans will have been pleased with what they saw.”

Porter played alongside at least one other attacking player up front for Colchester this season, having been utilised for much of the previous campaign in League One as a lone striker.

The 33-year-old, who has just enjoyed the third-best goalscoring year of his career, says he enjoyed playing alongside the likes of Kurtis Guthrie and Sammie Szmodics.

“Last season was difficult because the team was so low in confidence and we were losing games,” said the former Sheffield United front-man.

“We also played one up front a lot of the time last season, which can sometimes be difficult.

“This season, we’ve played two up front or at least had someone up close to me and that’s helped me a bit and made a difference.

“I’ve got to be happy that I’ve been able to play the number of games that I have especially when you look at the amount of other players who we’ve had out, so I count myself lucky.

“I had one injury this season; thankfully I found the cure for it and it hasn’t troubled me again.”

Porter skippered Colchester for much of this campaign, after club captain Luke Prosser suffered a season-ending knee injury in November.

He added: “I’ve enjoyed being captain this season - it’s a lot easier to do it when you’re winning games, rather than losing.

“It was disappointing to see Luke Prosser get injured but it’s been great to lead the side on the pitch.”