Jacko’s side-bet with team-mate Courtney

PUBLISHED: 06:00 09 November 2018

Ryan Jackson celebrates scoring to put the U's 2-0 up against Port Vale in the first home game of the season . Picture: STEVE WALLER

Ryan Jackson celebrates scoring to put the U's 2-0 up against Port Vale in the first home game of the season . Picture: STEVE WALLER

© Copyright Stephen Waller

Ryan Jackson, even though he is a defender by trade, has had a wager with Courtney Senior that he can score more goals than his team-mate this season.

Ryan Jackson, right, celebrates with keeper Rene Gilmartin following the recent 1-0 home win over leaders Lincoln City. Picture: STEVE WALLERRyan Jackson, right, celebrates with keeper Rene Gilmartin following the recent 1-0 home win over leaders Lincoln City. Picture: STEVE WALLER

Ryan Jackson, even though he is a defender by trade, has had a wager with Courtney Senior that he can score more goals than his team-mate this season.

That might seem a tall order for Jackson, who operates either as a right-back or right wing-back, as opposed to Senior’s more attacking role as a winger or in a withdrawn striker’s role.

But Jackson has bagged two goals already this term, just behind Senior (three goals), ahead of tomorrow’s FA Cup first round tie away at League One high-fliers Accrington Stanley.

And the 28-year-old has also weighed in with a couple of assists along the way, to help the U’s up to third spot in League Two.

U's atttacker, Courtney Senior, who is involved in a private side-bet with Ryan Jackson. Picture: STEVE WALLERU's atttacker, Courtney Senior, who is involved in a private side-bet with Ryan Jackson. Picture: STEVE WALLER

“I’m always looking to score goals,” explained Jackson.

“I’ve got a couple so far, and I will be hoping to double that and add a few more assists. I’m trying, always trying.

“I’ve even had a little side-bet with Courtney (Senior) to see which of us will score the most goals.

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“At the other end of the pitch, we have looked rock solid at the back. We’ve kept three clean-sheets in our last four games, but that’s credit to the whole team.

“We have worked hard at pressing the opposition, and it has been working.

“So long as we are keeping clean-sheets, we have a good chance of winning, especially with the forwards that we have got, although our goals have been coming from everywhere.

“Everyone has chipped in and played their part.

“Personally, I feel that I’m playing my best football for Colchester. The free-flowing style suits me, and the way we counter-attack,” added Jackson.

Even though Accrington are impressing in League One – they currently sit in seventh spot, only outside the play-offs on goal difference – following promotion last season as League Two champions, Jackson is full of optimism for the weekend jaunt to the Crown Ground.

“I fancy our chances,” continued Jackson.

“We are all feeling confident at the moment. We are on a good run, and so much can happen in the FA Cup.

“The build-up hasn’t been any different this week, even though it’s a cup game rather than a league match. We are approaching it in the same manner, training hard and then trying to bring that onto the pitch on Saturday.

“A cup run can distract from the league, but it can also work the other way and really lift the squad, if you get some decent cup draws along the way.

“It’s always nice to have your name in the hat for the next round, especially after what happened to us last year (home defeat to non-league Oxford City in the first round).

“We want to rectify that, we are due a good cup run.”

The U’s have only lost four of their first 17 league games this term, a record that has not surprised Jackson. Likewise, the ex-Gillingham defender has not raised an eyebrow at the great start enjoyed by Accrington in a higher division.

“I haven’t really been surprised with how well Accrington have been doing this season, because they were a good team last year well,” confirmed Jackson.

“They always had a goal-threat, and they have a few new players as well.

“We should be able to take inspiration from what they have done over the last year, although we have our own missions of what we want to achieve.

“They have a tight-knit squad, a bit like ourselves. But for us it’s step-by-step, by keeping winning games to see where we end up.”

The U’s won four of their six league matches during October, and rose into the top three following last weekend’s 1-0 win over Swindon Town.

It is a start to the season which excites Jackson, after the Essex club finished in a disappointing mid-table slot last campaign.

“I had a feeling that this season would be good,” revealed Jackson.

“Quite a lot of the boys knew each other from before, and we’ve added to the squad and we have all gelled really well.

“We have that continuity, we’ve kept the core of the squad together with a few others boosting the squad.

“Our away form has been pretty good this season. No one likes travelling too far, and we have three away trips to come over the next week (Accrington Stanley, Cambridge United and Newport County), but it’s got to be done. We’re confident.”

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