REVITALISED Colchester United winger Brennan Dickenson says he feels as confident now as he did during his outstanding first season at the club.

The 26-year-old is pushing for a recall to John McGreal’s starting line-up for tomorrow’s trip to play Swindon Town, after impressing off the bench over recent weeks.

Dickenson enjoyed a memorable first campaign at Colchester, with his electric form leading to him landing the club’s Player of the Year and Players’ Player of the Year awards in the 2016-17 season.

But it was cruelly cut short by a cruciate knee injury which kept him sidelined for nearly ten months and restricted him to just four league starts, last season.

However, Dickenson has been in good form of late. And after coming off the bench to provide the assist for Frankie Kent’s equaliser in the U’s 1-1 draw with Carlisle United last weekend, he is now hoping to earn a place in their starting line-up.

“It’s difficult to get back to my first season at the club,” said Dickenson, who has made 14 starts and 17 substitute appearances for Colchester in League Two so far, this season.

“But I feel as confident as I did then and it’s all about having that time on the pitch and with the time that I have played, I feel that I’ve played well and made definite changes to the game.

“I just have to keep doing that and working hard and if the manager picks me to start, then I’ll do what I can.

“Fitness-wise, I’m good and I’m feeling healthy and confident.

“I obviously want to be starting but the boys are playing well and I have to fight for my shirt.

“You have to give the manager and the assistant manager a challenge in picking the team.

“I feel like I have to keep doing what I’m doing, keep my head down and work hard.

“You have to be ready for anything – it can change at any minute of the game whether it’s the first or the last.

“You have to be ready to be called upon.”

Dickenson has not started for Colchester since their 3-2 home defeat to Mansfield Town, on January 19.

But the former Brighton youngster insists he does not allow himself to be disheartened if he is not in the team.

“The team have been performing well and it’s been hard to get into the team,” he added.

“But I feel like I’ve had a positive effect with my performances coming on in those games.

“I got an assist with my first touch at Northampton which was nice and then at the weekend, to play a crucial part in the assist for the goal with the cross and then we get the point from that game.

“I’m feeling good and I’m feeling confident.

“You can’t get too disheartened by it – the manager has got a hard enough job picking the team as it is.

“I’m just working hard in and out of training to keep myself in tip-top shape.

“It’s up to the manager what he decides to do on Saturday.

“But whether I play or don’t play, I’ll give 100 per cent no matter what whether it’s 90 minutes or ten minutes.”