John McGreal has called on his Colchester United players to maintain their consistency to rise up the League Two table – and believes supporters can play their part in helping them achieve their objective.

The U’s host Crewe Alexandra this afternoon on the back of two positive away results and have lost only one of their last six games in League Two.

Three of Colchester’s next four league games – and four out of their next six matches in all competitions – take place at the Community Stadium.

While McGreal has urged his players to strive for some positive results, the U’s head coach also feels the club’s fans can play their part.

McGreal said: “We’ve gained a little bit of momentum with our away form and we’re just hoping that we can carry that through to our home games.

“We have to carry on from where we left off at Coventry – not with the ten men but with the desire and determination and get our fans on board.

“They’ve travelled the length and breadth to watch us in our last two away games and we’ve given them something to shout about, at the minute.

“We’re hoping that the South Stand boys will start generating that bit of noise that we do need, which we were all accustomed to last season and the early part of this season.

“It goes a long way and it does help the team.

“There’s a third of the season gone and it’s flashed by.

“We’ve got ourselves into a nice little position where we’re six points away from the play-offs. It’s really tight – we know that – but anything can happen in this league.

“We have to keep that consistency that we seem to have found away from home and bring that both collectively as a team and individually.

“It’s fine margins in League Two – we’re finding that at the moment and so are Crewe who are a little bit unlucky at this moment in time results-wise, looking at their performances.

“We know it’s going to be a test against them and we’ve set ourselves up to put in a very good performance.”

The vast majority of Colchester’s home wins under McGreal have come when they have scored the first goal.

But the U’s have not come from behind to win a match after going behind since December and in Crewe’s last 15 games, the team that has opened the scoring has gone on to win.

“The first goal is so important – we know that from our away games especially,” added McGreal.

“It’s tended to be that when we’ve scored first, we’ll get something out of the game and it just so happens that it runs through the division.”