Manager on the Colchester game
United manager Greg Abbott spoke to us after the final whistle had blown on the last game of the season at Brunton Park.
“We’re not happy with today’s performance at all,” he said. “We didn’t get anything going and there was no momentum or fluency to our play. We’re maybe looking at a situation where our work had been in the six or seven weeks leading up to the game but that doesn’t excuse it. We wanted to finish the season on a high and we haven’t managed to do that.
“The disappointment is that we’ve been quite good over the last few months and we couldn’t replicate that. It was an end of season performance but it’s important that you do your good work in front of your own fans. Doncaster, Oldham and Sheffield United away were all magnificent, but we all wanted to do that here.
“We’ve maybe seen where it is we need to strengthen as we go forward, because we do lack that little bit of pace at times. We saw again when Paul [Thirlwell] came off that we looked a bit frail and they were able to get at us more. We need to be able to change things for the better and there are definitely things there for us to look at.
“I think we do need genuine pace to put people on the back foot. We don’t have too many who can stretch the game at the moment and that’s when you get your ball players on the ball. It’s been evident over the course of the season but the players have coped with it admirably.
“It’s been a long, hard slog and we’ve got ourselves into a position where we are ready to put the mediocre season behind us. We want a squad which is capable of challenging at a much better level and the work will start on Monday to do that.”
“I’m loathe to criticise the players after the shift they have put in over the last few months, but that wasn’t nice to watch at all,” he added. “We gave them a couple of really sloppy goals and it has sent everyone away feeling really deflated. We absolutely didn’t want that. The expectations are much higher now and we all want to be at the top end of things. That’s our aim again next season.”
“We will sit and talk to the players about where we want to go with it over the early part of next week,” he said. “There are a lot of areas to be looked at inside the club, from top to bottom, because we all know that we have got to improve. I would like to think I’ll be part of that next year but that’s also part of the conversations we still need to have.
“There have been good talks between myself, Andrew Jenkins and John Nixon, and we have talked about the issues we’ve faced this season. They know what we want to do and how we want to do it, but I would expect those talks to happen again this week as well. The fact is that the results in the first half of the season hurt us, and we never really recovered from it.
"Now it’s time for us to dust ourselves off and make sure we are better in every area we can be. We have to exhaust every resource at our disposal and, if we stick together, we’ll be able to hopefully enjoy some good times again.”