COLCHESTER United playmaker Ben Stevenson insists they are relishing the prospect of taking on League Two leaders Newport County tonight.

The U’s head to Rodney Parade aiming to chalk up three straight league wins for the first time since April 2018, following back-to-back victories against Harrogate Town and Forest Green Rovers.

They take on a Newport side who have won six of their first eight league matches and sit two points clear, at the top of the table.

Colchester are embarking on two matches in the space of 72 hours but midfielder Stevenson insists they are ready for the challenge.

Stevenson said: “It’s a bit of a manic schedule but because of the conditions we’re playing in, training has been lighter and we’re prepared for it.

“It’s a game we’re looking forward to because Newport are top of the league.

“Hopefully we’ve can do the same as we’ve done in our last two games which is beat a form side and get the win.

“We’ve just had two tough games against two good teams who have been flying in the league.

“Forest Green were unbeaten and we beat them and Harrogate had won four on the bounce and were in really good form and we won both, even though we didn’t play as well as we know we can.

“It does show the sign of a good team.”

Stevenson was on target in Colchester’s 2-1 win over Harrogate, last weekend.

He doubled the U’s lead after Callum Harriott had put them ahead and despite Jon Stead reducing the deficit on the hour, it was not enough to prevent the hosts from winning.

“Harrogate got a goal from a set-piece to make it 2-1 and we still had half an hour to go,” said former Wolves and Coventry City midfielder Stevenson.

“But I felt we dug in really well and defended well.

“I think in previous years, we’d have maybe got a point out of it or maybe gone on to lose so it was good to hang on to it and get the three points.

“We’re a tight group and even when we weren’t playing well in the first half, we weren’t digging each other out – we were trying to get each other going.

“We stuck together and we were calm at half-time and knew that we had to do better.”

Stevenson marked his return to Colchester’s starting line-up against Harrogate with his second goal in three games.

The 23-year-old added: “It’s nice when the manager shows belief in you and I try my best to repay that.

“The build-up to that second goal is what we’re all about.

“It’s what we work on and the quality of our counter-attacking play has shown.”