COLCHESTER United winger Courtney Senior admitted scoring on his debut made the “rocky road” back to fitness worthwhile.

The ex-Brentford youngster had to battle back from a serious knee injury suffered just days after joining the U’s, last June.

It kept him out for all of last season but he signalled his comeback with a goal in the closing seconds of Saturday’s 5-1 win against Forest Green Rovers.

Now he is hoping to make a similarly positive impact in tonight’s Checkatrade Trophy match at home to Reading under-21s.

“It was a really special moment for me,” said the 19-year-old, reflecting on his goal in the League Two contest.

“When I first came to the club I did my anterior cruciate ligament, which was hard to take but I just had to get on with it.

“It’s been a rocky road but I’m buzzing to be back and that goal makes all the hard work worthwhile.

“I’ve been doing extra sessions just to get fit and now I am. It’s been a case of doing extra work, because if you don’t do the work then injuries can come back again.

“I’m buzzing to make an impact for the team.

“I’d been training with the first team for the previous week – I think the manager and Bally (Steve Ball) were impressed with what they have seen and I showed it on the pitch.”

Senior will hope for more involvement in tonight’s Checkatrade Trophy match at the Weston Homes Community Stadium (kick-off 7.30pm).

Colchester are in Southern Group B, along with the Royals, Essex rivals Southend United and Gillingham.

“I wanted to make an impression when I first joined Colchester but things don’t always go your way,” he said.

“It’s good that I’ve got my first game and first goal and hopefully, there’ll be more.

“Hopefully I can get a few more minutes against Reading under-21s, in the Checkatrade Trophy, hopefully starting but if not to come on as a substitute and make an impact.

“It was great that we got our first win as the previous few games had been hard.

“It was great to win 5-1 at home in front of the fans, so I can’t complain.”

Tickets for tonight's game are £10 for adults and £1 for under-11s.