COLCHESTER United head coach John McGreal says he is encouraged by his side’s form as they into their pivotal final game of the regular League Two season.

After a disappointing run of form, the U’s have picked up seven points from a possible nine in their last three games, to stay in contention for a play-off place.

Colchester have conceded only once in that time, scoring four times to give themselves a chance of clinching a top-seven finish, ahead of their crunch game at champions Lincoln City at Sincil Bank this weekend.

McGreal said: “The form is encouraging.

“We don’t want to run out of games and we’ve had that blip where we weren’t able to get the goals.

“More often than not generally when we score, we win games of football.

“It’s proved to be the case throughout the season and we’ve just been lacking in that goal area but these boys give you everything, the young team that I’ve got and there’s not a day of training when someone cries off.

“They are there straight on time from the start until the end and they’re a joy to work with and we want to continue that.”

Ethan Ross is set to continue in goal for Colchester against Lincoln, with Dillon Barnes still suspended and Rene Gilmartin injured.

Ross helped the U’s keep a clean sheet after making his first-ever senior start in their 2-0 win over MK Dons, last weekend.

McGreal said: “It’s difficult for him to come in - he’s a young boy but we’re a young team out there.

“It’s a young keeper coming into replace another young keeper and I don’t think that happens anywhere else.

“We’re a club of opportunity and we back these players, because we believe in them.

“He looked assured but I thought our back four particularly Frankie (Kent) and Easty (Tom Eastman) were outstanding along with the spine of the team and I think that really helps.

“They tried to target him at set plays but he was able to deal with it.

“I think Yeovil tried to do it on the Monday but we were able to deal with it.

“It might be a bit different at Lincoln, with him being a young keeper.

“But he’s got an opportunity because of Rene (Gilmartin’s) injury and we’ve got a suspension but it is what it is.”

Kane Vincent-Young will see a specialist in a bid to determine the extent of his abdominal injury that has sidelined him for Colchester’s last two games.

The talented left-back has missed the U’s games against MK Dons and Yeovil Town with the injury and could also be sidelined for the Lincoln trip.