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Mark Yeates says he’s reaping the benefits of his loan spell at Colchester United.

Mark Yeates says he’s reaping the benefits of his loan spell at Colchester United.

The young winger - he turned 21 yesterday - has been in sparkling form over the last few weeks as the U’s have rocketed up the League One table.

Yeatesy’s performances have earned rave reviews - including a few headlines in the national press - as he bagged both goals in the big win against fellow title-chasers Brentford, followed up with another as U’s beat Forest 3-1 and then crossed for Gareth Williams to head home the winner in the shock FA Cup win at Premiership hopefuls Sheffield United.

On the fringe of the first team squad for a couple of seasons, Mark made his Premiership breakthrough at Spurs with an assist for Robbie Keane in the win at Wolves on the final day of the 2003-04 season.

He made three substitute appearances last season and went on loan at Swindon but is now in the form of his career so far halfway through his season-long loan at Layer Road.

I’ve never played 26, 27 games on the bounce before at but I’m playing every week at Colchester and it’s going well

“Fitness-wise I feel on top form, as good as I’ve been,†beamed the popular Irishman when he popped into Spurs Lodge earlier this week.

“The team is doing really well and for me personally it’s been good over the last few weeks with getting a few goals and assists.

“People there would probably say I’ve been playing well without scoring the goals but it’s coming along nicely now and I’m enjoying it.

“The main thing for me was to go out and play regularly and I’ve managed to do that. I think I’ve only missed one game all season so I’m delighted with that.â€Â

Phil Parkinson’s men are up to fifth in the table and now in the title shake-up, let alone the play-offs.

“The main target for Colchester is promotion and we’ve got a real chance if we keep doing what we’re doing,†he added. “It’s a small club and everyone knows that but there’s a really good bunch of players there, young lads as well. I’ve been impressed with the quality of the squad and delighted to be part of it.â€Â