NEW signing Sam Saunders will bring 'nous and experience' to Colchester United's squad after joining the club on a free transfer.

That is the view of U's boss John McGreal, who has drafted the experienced midfielder in for the remaining games of the League Two season.

Saunders, 35, made his Colchester debut as a late substitute in their 1-0 win at Cambridge United yesterday, a victory that ended a three-game losing streak in League Two.

The former Brentford favourite was a free agent after being released by League One side Wycombe Wanderers by mutual consent, in January.

McGreal said: “Sam has come in, in the early part of the week.

“We wanted him in the latter part of last week but we weren’t able to do it, because of his other commitments.

“With the injury crisis we’ve got in that midfield area, he’s going to come in and give us that nous and experience in there.

“He’s been promoted before and he’s doing his coaching badges, so he’s in and around the young lads.

“He’s been absolutely brilliant and as you’ve seen with his cameo of ten to 15 minutes, he’s getting Mika (Mandron) in there and giving Courtney (Senior) another run.

“Tom Lapslie gave everything again (at Cambridge) at only 60-70 per cent fit and (Sam) is a ready-made replacement to come in."

Saunders, who was without a club, has signed for Colchester until the end of the season.

He was at Charlton Athletic and Fulham as a youngster but emerged through non-league football and made more than 100 appearances for Dagenham and Redbridge between 2005 and 2009.

Saunders then moved onto Brentford where he spent eight seasons, making 170 appearances at Griffin Park.

He then spent four years at Wycombe and has been a free agent since January, when his contract with the Chairboys was cancelled by mutual consent.

Colchester have moved to bolster their squad, following a spate of midfield injuries.

Harry Pell, Brandon Comley and Louis Dunne are all sidelined, while Tom Lapslie is still coming back from a hamstring injury.