HARRY Pell believes Colchester United have produced a ‘brilliant’ response to their shock FA Cup defeat against Marine.

Since suffering a surprise defeat to the non-league outfit, the U’s have taken four points from six in League Two and have also thrashed Essex rivals Southend United 6-1, in the Papa John’s Trophy.

Colchester claimed a good away point after striking late to draw 1-1 at resurgent Mansfield Town and skipper Pell is happy with their reaction, following the cup disappointment.

Pell said: “After the Marine game, the whole club knew that we needed a refocus and we most definitely as a club have proven that.

“We need to take this form forward, keep all the boys on it and stay focused.

“I don’t think everyone understands just how hard the Marine defeat hit us.

“It was so disappointing and for us to react in the way that we’ve done I think is brilliant and I’m sure the fans will be proud of the way that we’ve bounced back.

“We just need to keep that level of performance and if we do that, I think we’ll be fine.”

Colchester had trailed to Nicky Maynard’s 67th-minute opener, a strike which keeper Dean Gerken felt he should have saved.

But Luke Norris came off the bench to score a late equaliser, to secure the U’s a point at the One Call Stadium.

The draw leaves Colchester in seventh spot, ahead of their trip to play Exeter City tomorrow night.

“Gerks has gone in there and apologised – he’s a good pro,” added midfielder Pell.

“He’s the first to admit that he needs to do better than that and he knows that more than anyone.

“But if you look at the last couple of games, he’s probably kept us in them and made some crucial saves.

“We dominated the play in the first half and you could really see our patterns of play and what we’ve been working on.

“I’m not sure if we created too much to come off the pitch and feel really hard done by that we didn’t win the game.

“But we performed well and gave a good account of ourselves.

“Most importantly, when we’ve gone 1-0 down we rolled our sleeves up and shown a bit of fight.

“I’m proud of the boys for sticking with it.”