Colchester United F.C.

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Colchester United
Colchester United FC logo.svg
Full nameColchester United Football Club
Nickname(s)The U's
GroundColchester Community Stadium
Ground Capacity10,084
ChairmanRobbie Cowling
ManagerJoe Dunne
LeagueLeague One
2013–14League One, 16th
Current season
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Colchester United
Colchester United FC logo.svg
Full nameColchester United Football Club
Nickname(s)The U's
GroundColchester Community Stadium
Ground Capacity10,084
ChairmanRobbie Cowling
ManagerJoe Dunne
LeagueLeague One
2013–14League One, 16th
Current season

Colchester United Football Club is a football club in Colchester, England, that plays in League One, the third tier in the English football league system. The club was formed in 1937, and briefly shared their old Layer Road home with now defunct side Colchester Town who had previously used the ground from 1910.

Colchester United are perhaps most famous for beating Don Revie's Leeds United 3–2 in the 5th round of the FA Cup in 1971. Their highest ever league finish was achieved in 2006–07, when they ended the season in 10th place in the Championship, above East Anglian rivals Ipswich Town, Norwich City and also Essex rivals Southend United while having the division's lowest attendance.


Chart of table positions of Colchester United in the Football League.

Colchester Town were the town's main club in the early 20th century and were the original tenants of Layer Road. In 1935 they joined the Eastern Counties League, but their poor performances in the league convinced supporters that the club should turn professional like nearby Ipswich Town.[1] Officials at the club were against the idea, resulting in a new professional club, Colchester United, being formed in March 1937, which would also play at Layer Road. United joined the Southern League and crowds at Town matches quickly dwindled.[1] In December United formed a reserve team, signing many Town players. As a result of this and financial problems (the club were £300 in debt), Town folded in the same month.[1][2]

In the 1947–48 season Colchester, then in the Southern League, produced one of the most notable FA Cup runs by a non-league side, beating fellow-non-league side Banbury Spencer in the First Round before beating league clubs Wrexham, Huddersfield and Bradford Park Avenue. They finally fell to Blackpool in the fifth round.

United were elected to the Football League in 1950. They spent most of the 50s, 60s and 70s either in the third or fourth tiers before spending the 80s in the fourth tier. However the club got into financial problems towards the end of the 80s and lost their league status for two seasons from relegation in 1990 until 1992, when they won a non-league double by collecting the Conference title and the FA Trophy. They then finished around mid table in the fourth tier for the next 3 seasons before reaching the play-offs in 1995–96 but losing in the semis to Plymouth Argyle.

In the 1996–97 season Colchester were runners up in the Football League Trophy and just missed out on the play-offs by 1 point. But in 1997–98, they got themselves promoted by winning the play-offs to the third tier. They then consolidated their position in that division before achieving promotion in 2005–06 to the second tier of English football, the Championship, by finishing in second place in League One, just behind local rivals Southend United. They also had a good FA Cup run that season before losing in the 5th round to Chelsea despite taking the lead at Stamford Bridge. After a slow start to the 2006–07 season, they soon entered the higher reaches of the division and there was even talk of a challenge for promotion to the Premier League, before they finished tenth in the final table, their highest ever placing. The following season Colchester finished bottom of the Championship with 38 points and were relegated back to League One, where they currently compete.

Colours and badge[edit]

PeriodKit manufacturerShirt sponsor (home)Shirt sponsor (away)
1980–1982Royal London Insurance
1982–1986Le Coq Sportif
1986–1987None0800 Linkline
1987–1988OlympicNorcross Estates
1991–1992RiberoColchester Hippodrome
1992–1993The Sun
1994–1995SGR Colchester
1996–1997Goldstar Fabrications
1997–1999PatrickGuardian Direct
1999–2000East Anglian Daily TimesAshby's Tea & Coffee
2000–2002Strike ForceJobServeRidley's Brewery
2002–2004Tiptree Jam
2004–2005AdmiralICS Triplex
2006–2007DiadoraMutualPoints.comSmart Energy
2008–2009PumaWeston Homes
2010–2012Reader Offers Limited
2013–Weston Homes

Colchester United play in the same blue and white stripes as Colchester Town originally did, and chose the nickname "The U's" to distinguish themselves from the older club, who had been known as "The Oystermen", before they folded. The town crest was worn on United kits for the first time in the 1947–48 season, which dates back to a royal charter granted by Henry V in 1413.

The traditional shirts were changed to the newly fashionable candy stripes: white on blue in 1967 and blue on white in 1968. In 1969, when stripes of any kind were out of favour, the club adopted a strip modelled on that worn by Chelsea, with blue shirts and shorts trimmed in white together with white socks. The crest was also modified the following season and now featured a white background.

For the 1972–73 season the management decided to relaunch the club with a new badge (a Roman eagle standard), new nickname (The Eagles) and an all-white kit worn with red boots. The season was a disaster – the manager resigned and Colchester had to apply for re-election. Traditional stripes were reinstated in 1973 (without a crest of any kind) worn with blue shorts, and in 1979, the club adopted the popular striped Adidas shirt of the period, on which the stripes on the body echoed the trademarked three-stripe trim. These shirts were adorned with a simple monogramme.

Another version of the Roman eagle crest was introduced in 1993 and used for two seasons. The 1994–95 version was white and placed against a blue stripe. In 1995 the crest was modified to place the eagle (now in gold) against a shield in Colchester's traditional stiped motif. This proved more durable and popular than its predecessors and was used until 2004. An amended (and the current) crest was introduced in 2004 with a modernised look.[3]

For the 2012–13 season, the U's marked their 75th anniversary with special kit. The shirt was coloured in the usual blue and white stripes, however it did not have a main sponsorship logo, as the club looked to promote local businesses on a game-by-game basis and to reflect on the club's early days without a sponsor.[4]

Kit manufacturers[edit]


Colchester United formed in 1937 and took over Layer Road from the recently defunct Colchester Town. That remained their home until 2008. At its closure, the ground had a capacity of 6,340, though it had previously been much higher, with a record attendance of 19,072.

In 2000, Colchester announced plans to move to a new 10,000 capacity all-seater community stadium at Cuckoo Farm, which were given the go-ahead by Colchester Borough Council on 13 November 2006. Construction of the stadium, funded by the club but owned by the local council, started in June 2007, and the stadium opened at the start of the 2008–09 season. Colchester's biggest attendance at the stadium of 10,064 was set at a League One match against Norwich City on 16 January 2010.

Although generally known as the Colchester Community Stadium, and sometimes as Cuckoo Farm, it is officially called, under a ten-year sponsorship deal, the Weston Homes Community Stadium.[6]


Main articles: Essex derby and Pride of Anglia

Colchester's main rivalry is with fellow Essex side Southend United, with whom they contest the Essex derby. The competitive head-to-head record is 29 wins to Southend, 25 wins for Colchester and 17 draws.[7]

Colchester United also have a rivalry with Ipswich Town, their geographically closest league opponents, whom they met for the first time in a league fixture for almost half a century in the 2006–07 season. A 1–0 win at home, followed by a 3–2 defeat away for Colchester saw Ipswich take their overall competitive record against Colchester to 10 wins, 4 losses with 4 draws.[8]

In the 2009–10 season, a rivalry with Norwich City flared up after Colchester manager Paul Lambert first led the U's to a 7–1 victory at Norwich, and then ten days later defected to the canaries.

By finishing above both Ipswich & Norwich in the 2006–07 season, Colchester United took the "Pride of Anglia" title for the first time.

League One side Wycombe Wanderers are also fierce rivals to Colchester United, dating back to both clubs' latter years in the Conference.[9] Whilst not a local derby, the rivalry goes back to the 1985–86 season, when Wycombe defeated Colchester 2–0 in an FA Cup tie marred by crowd trouble at Loakes Park.

Colchester and Wycombe were also involved in a race for the Conference title throughout the 1991–92 season, during which Colchester defeated Wycombe 2–1 at Adams Park with an injury-time wind-assisted winner from their goalkeeper, Scott Barrett. Another controversial meeting was during the 1998–99 season. Relegation-threatened Wycombe were leading Colchester 2–1 at Adams Park until the sixth minute of stoppage time, when Colchester were awarded, and converted, an equalising penalty. However, due to lack of recent games between the two sides, Colchester United fans consider Ipswich and Southend bigger rivals.


As of 22 May 2014[10]

First team[edit]

Note: Flags indicate national team as has been defined under FIFA eligibility rules. Players may hold more than one non-FIFA nationality.

EnglandGKMark Cousins (out of contract)
EnglandGKSam Walker
EnglandDFTom Eastman
NigeriaDFMagnus Okuonghae
EnglandDFJosh Thompson (out of contract)
JamaicaMFMarcus Bean
EnglandMFCraig Eastmond
EnglandMFAlex Gilbey
EnglandMFGavin Massey
EnglandMFDominic Vose
EnglandMFSanchez Watt
EnglandMFDavid Wright (out of contract)
EnglandMFDrey Wright
EnglandFWJabo Ibehre
EnglandFWFreddie Sears

Development Squad[edit]

Note: Flags indicate national team as has been defined under FIFA eligibility rules. Players may hold more than one non-FIFA nationality.

ScotlandGKJames Bransgrove
EnglandDFFrankie Kent
Republic of IrelandDFMichael O'Donoghue
EnglandDFTosin Olufemi
EnglandDFBilly Roast
EnglandMFJack Curtis
EnglandMFConor Hubble
EnglandMFTom Lapslie
EnglandMFDion Sembie-Ferris
WalesMFJack Simmons
EnglandMFSammie Szmodics
EnglandFWMacauley Bonne
NigeriaFWNnamdi Nwachuku
EnglandFWDominic Smith

Youth Team[edit]

Note: Flags indicate national team as has been defined under FIFA eligibility rules. Players may hold more than one non-FIFA nationality.

GKRonnie Carroll
GKCallum Robinson
DFMarley Andrews
DFCharlie Gardiner
DFCameron James
DFJoshua Pollard
DFJamie Stephens
DFJJ Wilson
MFTyler Brampton
MFGeorge Brown
Northern IrelandMFMilo Downey
MFCallum Harrison
MFTom Monk
AustraliaMFPatrick O'Shea
MFDiaz Wright
FWJoel Atkin
FWWayne Blackman
FWTariq Issa




League honours[edit]

Cup honours[edit]

Reserves honours[edit]

Player awards[edit]

A full list of Colchester United seasons can be found here: List of Colchester United F.C. seasons
A full list of Colchester United records and statistics can be found here: List of Colchester United F.C. records and statistics

SeasonPlayer of the year[12]Top goalscorerMost appearances
1964–65England Percy AmesScotland Billy Stark 14Scotland Duncan Forbes 51
1965–66England Brian HallEngland Reg Stratton 21England Brian Hall 50
1966–67Scotland Duncan ForbesEngland Reg Stratton 24Scotland Duncan Forbes 50
1967–68England Derek TrevisEngland Reg Stratton 11Scotland Duncan Forbes 52
1968–69England Brian HallEngland Danny Light 14England Brian Hall 50
1969–70England Ken JonesEngland Ken Jones 16England Brian Hall 49
1970–71England Ray CrawfordEngland Ray Crawford 31England Brian Gibbs 56
1971–72England Micky CookEngland Brian Lewis 22England Mick Mahon 49
1972–73England Mick MahonEngland Mick Mahon 12England Mick Mahon 48
1973–74England Ray HarfordEngland Bobby Svarc 26England Ray Harford 48
1974–75England John FroggattEngland Bobby Svarc 25England Micky Cook 54
1975–76England Lindsay SmithEngland Steve Leslie 7England Mick Packer 48
1976–77England Steve DowmanEngland Colin Garwood 24England Micky Cook 55
1977–78England Steve LeslieEngland Bobby Gough 17Wales Mike Walker 55
1978–79England Steve WignallEngland Bobby Gough 22Wales Mike Walker 55
1979–80Wales Mike WalkerEngland Trevor Lee 18England Steve Leslie 54
1980–81Wales Mike WalkerScotland Kevin Bremner 10Wales Mike Walker 52
1981–82Scotland Kevin BremnerEngland Ian Allinson 26Scotland Kevin Bremner 56
1982–83Wales Mike WalkerEngland Ian Allinson 26England Ian Allinson 54
1983–84England Steve WignallEngland Tony Adcock 33England Alec Chamberlain 56
1984–85England Alec ChamberlainEngland Tony Adcock 28England Alec Chamberlain 54
1985–86England Roger OsborneEngland Tony Adcock 16England Alec Chamberlain 51
1986–87England Rudi HedmanEngland Tony Adcock 12England Alec Chamberlain 54
1987–88Northern Ireland Colin HillEngland Dale Tempest 14England Richard Wilkins 54
1988–89Northern Ireland Colin HillEngland Mario Walsh 15Northern Ireland Colin Hill 52
1989–90England Neale MarmonEngland Trevor Morgan 12England Scott Daniels 52
1990–91England Scott BarrettEngland Mario Walsh 18England Scott Barrett 51
1991–92England Nicky SmithEngland Roy McDonough 29England Scott Barrett 56
1992–93England Paul RobertsEngland Gary Bennett 10England Paul Roberts 50
1993–94Republic of Ireland Mark KinsellaEngland Steve Brown 13England Tony English 49
1994–95England Steve WhittonEngland Steve Whitton 13England Mark Kinsella 50
1995–96Republic of Ireland Mark KinsellaEngland Tony Adcock 17England Simon Betts 52
1996–97Wales Chris FryEngland Tony Adcock 14Republic of Ireland David Greene 55
1997–98England Richard WilkinsEngland Mark Sale 8England Carl Emberson 53
1998–99Republic of Ireland David GreeneEngland David Gregory 14England David Gregory 48
1999–2000Republic of Ireland David GreeneEngland Steve McGavin 16England David Gregory 49
2000–01England Mick StockwellEngland Mick Stockwell 11England Mick Stockwell 52
2001–02England Karl DuguidEngland Scott McGleish 16England Scott McGleish 52
2002–03England Simon BrownEngland Joe Keith 9England Kemal Izzet 48
2003–04England Alan WhiteEngland Scott McGleish 17England Sam Stockley 58
2004–05England Pat BaldwinEngland Craig Fagan 14England Kevin Watson 53
2005–06England Wayne BrownScotland Chris Iwelumo 19England Greg Halford 55
2006–07England Jamie CuretonEngland Jamie Cureton 24England Wayne Brown 48
2007–08England Johnnie JacksonJamaica Kevin Lisbie 17England Johnnie Jackson 48
2008–09England Dean HammondRepublic of Ireland Mark Yeates 13Republic of Ireland Mark Yeates 50
2009–10England Ben WilliamsJamaica Kevin Lisbie 13Nigeria Magnus Okuonghae 49
2010–11England David PerkinsRepublic of Ireland Dave Mooney 14Nigeria Kayode Odejayi 50
2011–12Nigeria Kayode OdejayiEngland Anthony Wordsworth 13England Brian Wilson 50
2012–13England Jabo IbehreEngland Freddie Sears 8Nigeria Magnus Okuonghae 46


Club records[edit]


Player records[edit]

Notable former players[edit]

The following players have been inducted into Colchester United's Hall of Fame for being one of "...those who have made a difference to the club's history."[14][15] The whole of the team that beat Leeds United in 1971 are included,[16] and in addition, Peter Wright was awarded the title of "U's Player of the Century".[17]

A list of notable former players can be found here: List of Colchester United F.C. players

Year inductedPos.Player nameYears with clubApps.GoalsNotes
2007DFEngland Micky Cook1969–198470024Club record appearance holder
2007DFEngland Tony English1985–199651558
2007DFEngland Brian Hall1965–197236436
2007MFRepublic of Ireland Mark Kinsella1989–199628142
2007FWEngland Peter Wright1951–196445295Voted 'Player of the Century' in 2000
2008FWEngland Tony Adcock1981–1987
386149Club record goalscorer
2008FWEngland Bobby Hunt1960–196416290
2008FWEngland Vic Keeble1947–195212984
2008FWEngland Martyn King1956–1964230140Club record league goalscorer
2008DFEngland Reg Stewart1949–19573172
2009DFEngland Bobby Cram1970–19721164Member of the team that beat Leeds in 1971
2009FWEngland Ray Crawford1970–19715631Member of the team that beat Leeds in 1971
2009DFEngland Brian Garvey1970–1972932Member of the team that beat Leeds in 1971
2009FWEngland Brian Gibbs1968–197217941Member of the team that beat Leeds in 1971
2009DFScotland John Gilchrist1970–1972562Member of the team that beat Leeds in 1971
2009DFScotland John Kurila1970–1971654Member of the team that beat Leeds in 1971
2009MFEngland Brian Lewis1970–19725926Member of the team that beat Leeds in 1971
2009FWEngland Mick Mahon1970–197315833Member of the team that beat Leeds in 1971
2009FWEngland Dave Simmons1970–19737119Member of the team that beat Leeds in 1971
2009GKEngland Graham Smith1969–19711150Member of the team that beat Leeds in 1971
2010GKEngland Percy Ames1955–19654220
2010DFEngland Mick Packer1973–198339322
2010GKWales Mike Walker1973–19835240
2011FWEngland Bob Curry1946–1951206105
2011MFEngland Kemal Izzet2001–42321
2012FWEngland Roy McDonough1981–1983
26782Manager of the team 1991–1994
2013MFEngland David Gregory1996–200225928
2013MFEngland Steve Leslie1971–198450346
Year InductedManager NameYears with ClubNotes
2007England Dick Graham1968–1972Manager of the team that beat Leeds in 1971


The below list indicates Colchester United managers since 1937.[18][19]

PeriodNamePWDLGFGAGDWin %Notes
1937–1939England Ted Davis127791731325154+17162.2%Colchester United's first ever manager
1945–1946England Syd Fieldus31117135170−1935.48%
1946–1948England Ted Fenton88481723214135+7954.55%
1948–1953England Jimmy Allen2491085982433380+5343.37%
1953–1955England Jack Butler7716194285138−5320.78%
1955–1963England Benny Fenton423165105153734730+439.01%
1963–1968England Neil Franklin2347262100313383−7030.77%
1968–1972England Dick Graham216925272322288+3442.59%
1972Scotland Dennis Mochan502328−60.0%Caretaker manager
1972–1975England Jim Smith140553649198167+3139.29%
1975–1982Scotland Bobby Roberts375144109122504451+5338.4%
1982–1983Northern Ireland Allan Hunter36177125139+1247.22%
1983–1986Wales Cyril Lea173714656294243+5141.04%
1986–1987Wales Mike Walker83371630120102+1844.58%
1987–1988England Roger Brown481612204668−2233.33%
England Steve Foley217593334−133.33%Caretaker manager
1989Scotland Jock Wallace521216246387−2423.08%
1990England Mick Mills2583142737−1032.0%
1990–1991England Ian Atkins513011108046+3458.82%
1991–1994England Roy McDonough155693452271226+4544.52%
1994Scotland George Burley2612684138+346.15%
1994–1995England Dale Roberts511357−220.0%Caretaker manager
1995–1999England Steve Wignall218816671289283+637.16%
1999England Mick Wadsworth2477102841−1329.17%
1999–2003England Steve Whitton181524683224288−6428.73%Includes time as caretaker
2003–2006England Phil Parkinson187795455256203+5342.25%
2006–2008Wales Geraint Williams109323047149166−1729.36%Includes time as caretaker
2008Wales Kit Symons520389−140.0%Caretaker manager
2008–2009Scotland Paul Lambert42197165543+1245.24%
2009–2010England Aidy Boothroyd441912135652+443.18%
2010– 2012England John Ward111333939139163−2429.73%
Republic of Ireland Joe Dunne7222163480100−2030.56%Includes time as caretaker

Club officials[edit]

Board and directors[20]

Management team


A. ^ : As part of the club's 75th anniversary, for the 2012–13 season, shirt sponsorship was provided by local businesses on a game-by-game basis.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b c Blakeman, M (2010) The Official History of the Eastern Counties Football League 1935–2010, Volume II ISBN 978-1-908037-02-2
  2. ^ Colchester Town at the Football Club History Database
  3. ^ "Colchester United – Historical Football Kits". Historical Football Kits. Retrieved 2009-09-21. 
  4. ^ "Match by Match Shirt Sponsorship". Retrieved 2012-06-07. 
  5. ^ "Club and Competition Sponsors". Retrieved 2011-08-15. 
  6. ^ Colchester reveal ground sponsors
  7. ^ All time results between Colchester United and Southend United Soccerbase
  8. ^ All time results between Ipswich Town and Colchester United Soccerbase
  9. ^ Football Rivalries: The Complete Results Bluebird to the Bone
  10. ^ "FootballSquads – Colchester United". FootballSquads. Retrieved 22 July 2013. 
  11. ^ "Honours". Coludata. Retrieved 2 June 2011. 
  12. ^ "Player awards". Coludata. Retrieved 2 June 2011. 
  13. ^ "Colchester United Records". Statto. Retrieved 2 June 2011. 
  14. ^ "Hall of Fame – Rules and Info". Retrieved 2008-08-08. 
  15. ^ "Hall of Fame". Coludaybyday. Retrieved 2 June 2011. 
  16. ^ "Leeds Cup Team Remembered". Colchester United F.C. Retrieved 2009-04-23. 
  17. ^ "Former Players Dinner Announced". Retrieved 2009-11-03. 
  18. ^ "Managerial Record". Coludaybyday. Retrieved 2 June 2011. 
  19. ^ "Manager history". Soccerbase. Retrieved 2 June 2011. 
  20. ^ "Club Info: Who's Who". Retrieved 29 September 2012. 
  21. ^

External links[edit]