We can't wait to get back to action

We're all itching to getting back to action this weekend at Mansfield Town and we’ll be aiming to get three vital points.

Colchester have had a great record against Mansfield over the years but I don’t think you can read into things like that too much before games.

Saying that, we beat them at home earlier in the season and put in an excellent defensive performance to draw 0-0 with them, the last time we played at Field Mill.

After that result, we managed to carry that kind of form into Christmas and it would be great to put in a similar kind of performance again, just with a few more chances created.

Mansfield have a new manager and when that happens, it’s sometimes a case of not really knowing what to expect.

But the manager and Bally went up to watch their game against Lincoln City on Tuesday night so I’m sure they will have a good idea of what to expect.

Will David Flitcroft change things much, because they have been quite successful under Steve Evans, who has now moved onto Peterborough United?

It’s the old cliché as far as I’m concerned – we will be focusing on ourselves and looking to put the last couple of weeks behind us.

We’re 35 games into the season – we’ve done some very good things and there have also been some poor performances but that’s gone now and now we have to focus on what’s in front of us.

We have 11 games to go and we have to try and take maximum points from each of them.

I was straight down the gym

It was frustrating to be left without a game last weekend, after our match at Morecambe was called off because of the freezing weather.

We planned last Friday very well – we held fire with the travelling until we knew what the outcome was of the inspection.

We had a very good session and then the manager gave us the weekend off, on the proviso that we did some work at home.

I headed out to the gym early on Saturday morning but it was a very odd feeling to be without a game, especially being in full-season mode as we are at the moment.

As a professional, you work hard in training all week with the game on the Saturday in mind and we were all ready to go up to Morecambe to put in a good performance and put the last couple of weeks behind us.

But we’re now 35 games into the league season and there are one or two niggles and strains as you would expect, so in that respect the postponement did us no harm at all.

We will now have to go up to Morecambe for a midweek game in a couple of weeks’ time but it’s another game of football.

It will be a long trip up there on a Tuesday night and a very late one but that’s part and parcel of football – Carlisle have to those kind of trips all the time!

We’ve all done them before and it’s just one of those things that we will need to deal with.

Draws galore

I watched with interest the results come in from our league on Tuesday night, with three of the four games played on the night finishing up as draws, which were pretty good I think from a Colchester United point of view.

It didn’t really surprise me that the games were so tight, as you tend to get that at this time of the season.

I think 3-0 or 4-0 results will be more of a rarity over the coming weeks and teams will try and generally keep things tight.

The vast majority of teams in our division are playing for something right now, whether it’s automatic promotion, the play-offs or fighting against relegation.

Davide Astori's death was tragic

The death of Fiorentina captain Davide Astori at the age of just 31 was tragic.

We all get caught up in the elation and the frustration of sport but this was one of those events in sport that puts everything into perspective.

You feel terrible for his family, friends, the club and their fans but Fiorentina have shown the type of club they are with how they have responded, by retiring his number 13 shirt and by announcing that they will honour his four-year contract.

Crutches helped me beat the Disney World queues

Hearing that Phil Neville and the England Women’s squad will be paying a visit to Disney World before their final game in the USA in the SheBelieves Cup brought back some happy memories of my visit there, when I was a kid.

I went there with my family when I was about ten or 11 years old and it was a great age to go.

I remember being in awe of the whole place and at the time, as a young sporty boy I picked up Osgood Schlatter disorder, which is basically when you’re growing a little too fast for your tendons and muscles.

I had it for about six months to a year and it’s pretty common for young athletes and particularly, teenage boys.

It meant that I was on crutches in Florida – which I would highly recommend for anyone visiting Disney World!

It was a bit cheeky but as a result, we jumped all types of queues and I remember being moved to the front of a three-hour long queue for the Hard Rock Café!

It certainly came in very handy.

One-day series finale is all set up

England's one-day Series in New Zealand will go right down to the wire, with the decider taking place on Saturday.

I caught some of the fourth one-day international, the day-night game on Tuesday night and Wednesday morning as I was up late doing some Uni work.

I woke up thinking England would have enough runs to win the game only to see that Ross Taylor scored 181 not out to give New Zealand victory.

It all sets it up nicely for the game in Christchurch on Friday night/Saturday morning and it’s been a great series.

Oldman's performance was phenomenal

The Oscars took place at an ungodly hour over here so I didn’t catch them live but I did managed to catch up on what happened afterwards.

I actually caught quite a few of this year’s Oscar-winning films.

Sometimes the movies are built to win but of the films I saw that won – The Shape of Water, Darkest Hour and Three Billboards – were all deserving winners, in my opinion.

It was great to see Gary Oldman win for his phenomenal portrayal of Winston Churchill in Darkest Hour, which I thought was fantastic.

I’m quite interested in that period of time anyway and Churchill was a fascinating man.

I liked the way the film was made – they could have done it taking a look at his whole life but I liked the way they focused on that short – but crucial – period of time.

Watt? Run that by me again, Sanchez!

I HAD to laugh when I heard about what happened to my old Colchester team-mate Sanchez Watt, on Tuesday night.

He was effectively sent off by the referee for saying his own name while playing for Hemel Hempstead Town against East Thurrock United!

Apparently, when asked for his name by the referee he repeatedly replied “Watt” – and was show a second yellow card for dissent and sent off.

Apparently, the referee mistook Watt’s response for “What?” before then rescinding the card.

I can see how it happened - Sanchez is a great character but when he spoke, it always seemed like he had an attitude even though he didn’t!

He’s a great lad and a very talented footballer and I’d be very surprised if we didn’t see him back in the Football League in the near future.