Colchester v Cambridge - Saturday 3pm
Joe Dunne won’t be short of background knowledge on Colchester, having served the club for the 18 years as a player, coach and manager before departing in September 2014. He’s now assistant to Shaun Derry at Cambridge and his insight on the Essex club, their philosophy and former colleague John McGreal should prevent the visitors from falling into any traps.
But it’s hard to imagine Cambridge actually winning this game on the back of their EFL extra-time victory over Sheffield Wednesday in midweek. Derry has a handful of short-term concerns in the treatment room that have prevented him from rotating as much as he might have liked, so fatigue could be a factor and backing the draw at 13/5 seems like a sensible play here.
These are two largely unknown quantities. Both would expect to be pushing towards the top of the table come the end of the season but neither can really claim to be ready to take the division by the scruff of the neck, so respect is likely to be mutual. Once a blanket figure for home advantage has been applied, my ratings make McGreal’s men favourites by just 0.03 goals.
Colchester are hardly in the habit of putting teams to the sword at the Community Stadium. They managed only four wins on home soil last season, taking their home win ratio over the past five years down to just 30 per cent.