COLCHESTER United head coach John McGreal insists his side are "on the right track" a third of the way through the season.

Having started the campaign without a win in their first four league games, the U’s are now up to eighth in League Two, having won seven of their 18 matches.

They are also enjoying a run in the Carabao Cup, which has already seen them beat Crystal Palace and Tottenham Hotspur and will take them to Manchester United for a quarter-final date in December.

Looking back at the season so far, boss McGreal said: “In the league, we had a really slow start and it took time to get going and to adjust to the quality of players we lost in the summer.

"Then Kane (Vincent-Young) left late on, which affected us.

“With new players coming in, it took a bit of adjusting to get used to.

“But you don’t want to look too far back – you want to look forwards because that’s where the future is and that’s where we want to evolve with the club.

“We feel as though it’s a progressive club and we feel we’re on the right track at the moment.”

As a team who play at least 46 league games a season, a week off is a rare luxury but that is the prospect facing the team this weekend as they have already been knocked out of the FA Cup.

The U’s do not play again until Tuesday's game against Stevenage, in the Trophy.

Then the pre-Christmas run of fixtures begins in earnest, with another trip to Manchester - this time to visit Salford City - kicking off December's League games.

They also face Scunthorpe United and Carlisle United before Boxing Day.

McGreal said: “It’s been a normal week for us – we were in on Monday and had the recovery sessions with the boys and then we started looking at Stevenage, because it’s another important game.

“We’ll be in over the weekend so it’s one of those when you make the most of it because after that, the games will be coming thick and fast with a bit of travelling as well.”