John McGreal says it will all about rest and recovery for his Colchester United players in the coming days as their busy festive programme continues.

The in-form U's travel to play Chesterfield on Saturday before 48 hours later hosting Cambridge United at the Weston Homes Community Stadium, on New Year's Day.

Colchester have just played two League Two matches in the space of 72 hours after taking on Port Vale on Saturday and then Crawley Town yesterday and boss McGreal admits the hectic schedule will push players to the limit.

He said: “Having these two games in the space of a few days is going to be a big ask for a lot of teams, not just ourselves.

“We do like the tradition of football over the festive period and the four games in nine days.

“We have a young team but it is tough and it’s one now where it’s all about recovery.

“We’re trying to manage it but I’m still learning how to get them to recover and play games as well."

Colchester fielded the same starting line-up for the third successive game in their 2-0 win at Crawley on Boxing Day.

But boss McGreal admits they have one or two players carrying knocks, following their victory at Broadfield Stadium.

He said: “The pleasing thing is that we’ve been able to play with the same starting line-up for the third game in a row.

“Kane (Vincent-Young) has been carrying a bit of a knock but was desperate to play.

“It was touch and go with him because of his knee after Saturday but the boy wants to play and there was no way he wasn’t going to play.

“Reidy took a bit of a knock (against Crawley) and we took him off but it was good to see Kurtis (Guthrie) come off the bench."