Banter with Burns with Colchester United Supporters Association chairman Jon Burns

THE U’s simply cannot afford to give away any more brilliant opportunities for points this season if they want to challenge for an automatic promotion spot.

I still think they have it in their power to achieve a top-three finish or at the very least secure a play-off position, which I think should be our bare minimum ambition at this stage of the season.

However well Grimsby played on Tuesday night, and in fairness they were impressive, our players are experienced enough to manage winning positions to the final whistle.

Unfortunately, the three goals we conceded were not our finest hour by any means and have made for some very painful viewing on social media this week.

That final goal would have had John McGreal pulling his hair out if he had any left of course, poor chap.

For me the first goal was just as bad with four players standing off allowing the shot.

Perhaps the U’s were just beaten by the better team on the night?

The U’s are themselves better than that last game. They showed us how well they can play and control the game against Plymouth, where they put on one of their best performances of the season to date.

We’ve all seen the highlights to prove it to ourselves once again. Bringing Stevenson in worked brilliantly.

He combined really well with Robinson and the wide attackers, it was a joy to watch.

It can work again at Port Vale tomorrow. They are a team in form and the U’s will have to be at their very best to get a result, but given the state of the table where the top four now have a gap below them, they simply must come away with something.

In our consistently, inconsistent week, if you were at both games you will have disappointingly witnessed similar behaviour from the officials.

Against Plymouth, it would appear that as yet the referee had not reached the page in the Laws of the Game which talks about playing advantage. Hope he does his homework before the next time we have him.

And against Grimsby, despite having excellent views of both incidents, the referee failed to spot flailing arms well away from where they should be.

The foul on Prosser that led to their second goal for example, and of course the fine save to prevent an early U’s goal. Blatant and obvious for me.

Anyway back to matters we can control so good luck to the U’s tomorrow.

It’s been a bit snowy and wet up there so I hope you the fans have a safe journey.