By Si Collinson

FOR me, the Easter weekend always signifies the business end of the season is upon us.

On the back of a positive draw at Mansfield Town, under the glare of the television cameras, it was now time for the U's to back this strong showing with a few Easter eggs of our own.

First up was Newport at home. We were visited by a side who still harbour play-off ambitions, so we knew it was no easy test.

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After a dominant display for the first 35 minutes, we somehow managed to go in at half-time 1-0 down against a side who had not had a shot on goal.

Same old Col U, it seemed.

But in fairness to the players and management, we pulled our socks up in the second half and went for it.

The substitutions worked well and it was nice to finally get a win, with a last-gasp goal scored by Jay Mingi.

It was also poetic to score so late on in added time, time that was only added on due to the Newport goalkeeper's persistent time wasting.

Easter Monday saw us away to Tranmere, a team that has gone from relegation threatened to until recently, play-off possibles.


The play-offs are now out of reach for them but we could not underestimate them at all, and they have been hard to beat at home.

The game was action packed from the start and with Tranmere taking an early lead, it was a head in hands moment.

But before we could really begin to worry, Alistair Smith scored a cracking goal to level with an instant response.

The score remained 1-1 and both teams had chances to win it, but ultimately a point on the road was fair.

This has been a good return from the long weekend of football for us, with four points from six.

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But it is frustrating as of course as soon as we find a bit of form, Sutton and Forest Green suddenly remember how to play football and win games.

We finished the weekend in the bottom two by one point but do however have three games in hand on Sutton.

This will go down to the wire and I think looking at the remaining fixtures and our games in hand, our season hinges on the home fixture against Grimsby, on April 16.

Win that and it will go a long way to securing our safety.

Away from the results, one player has to be highlighted and that is the hero from the Newport game. Jay Mingi.


He has not been as influential as all had hoped at Colchester since his arrival and injury but under the Cowleys, he has done a reverse John Stones and moved from midfield to be part of our defensive back line and he is a player reborn.

He is like a new signing and is in a position he looks like he was born to play in - quick, strong in the tackle and not scared to press forward when needed.

While he may well have been put there out of need more than anything with our recent injuries, I do think it has been a blessing.

He has the potential to make that position his own and really rise to the next level there.

It just shows that sometimes in football, trying something different really does produce the goods.

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This Saturday, there is the small matter of the Wrexham circus coming to town.

This has caused ticket sales to go though the roof and it looks likely we will be playing in front of a sell-out crowd. I just hope that the players do not let all this affect them.

It is a chance for all fans to really get behind the side and if 4,000 odd can have a positive psychological impact against Newport, let's just imagine what 8,000 plus can do.

No matter why this fixture has attracted a bumper crowd, as soon as the players cross onto the pitch from the warm till full-time we need to be behind the U’s and show we believe in them, Danny and Nicky to get this season over the line and on to better things next year. Up the U’s.