Doug Loft is confident Colchester United can avoid a slip-up against underdogs Oxford City tomorrow – and embark on an FA Cup run.

The U’s host National League South opponents looking to go one better than last time around and reach the second-round proper of the competition.

Loft has played his fair share of FA Cup ties over the years and has been on the winning side against non-league opponents such as Forest Green Rovers, Dartford and Torquay United.

Now the experienced midfielder wants to help Colchester safely negotiate their potential banana skin tie and make progress in the tournament.

Loft said: “A good run would be nice. We’ve definitely got enough in the changing room to go on a little run and we’ve got a good young squad with lots of legs and I’m sure we can go far.

“I love the FA Cup – I’ve got a few goals in it and one at the weekend would be nice.

“I’m 30 now and I look forward to it every year.

“For me, it’s the best competition you can play in. Everyone wants to do well in it and I enjoy playing in it and watching it.

“It’ll be a tough game – it’s a massive game for them and we know how hard it’s going to be, so we have to be right on it.

“I played against non-league opponents before and they always give a good game.

“I’ve seen both sides of it but I’ve never had any embarrassing results.

“We’re approaching it like any other game and we’ve prepared right.

“We know they’ll bring everything they’ve got and give us a challenge.

“But we’ve definitely got enough to get through it and I’m sure we will.”

Loft has featured in four of Colchester’s last five games, having seemingly shrugged off the injury problems that hampered him in the opening two months of the season.

“It’s good to be playing and I’m just happy to be fit, feeling well and playing games,” added the former Port Vale and Gillingham midfielder.

“I’m doing things differently during the week and it’s benefiting me a lot on Saturdays.

“It’s about managing it right - I have a few off days during the week and work hard on what I need to do and then come Saturday, feel good.

“I feel 100 per cent at the moment and I think that I’m showing that in my performances out on the pitch, so let’s hope it continues."