All this week, Vital Colchester counts down all things U`s. Today, we look at the club`s top five F.A. Cup upsets, including Leeds, Huddersfield & Coventry…
First Game: Vs Ilford 1919/1920. (As Colchester Town)
5) Vs Derby County (H) 3-1 Win 2005/6
Shock Factor: 6/10
Having defeated Sheffield United already on their way to a plumb tie later against Chelsea, Colchester followed up by soundly beating Derby County at Layer Road.
The Rams, an ex-Premiership side, were by now in the Championship but the win was nonetheless impressive.
Neil Danns reached 13 goals for the season and it was only January in an incredible year when the club also won Championship promotion.
“To beat two Championship sides in Sheffield United and Derby means a lot to the club. Some people see the Cup as a hindrance but for us it’s another £65,000 in the pot and I am not under so much pressure to sell players,” said ex-manager Phil Parkinson.
The team Colchester eventually put out to face Chelsea cost just £150,000, against a side assembled for some £225 million. Although they took the lead, the U`s loss that game.
4) Vs Coventry City (H) 3-1 Win 2003/4
Shock Factor: 7/10
On-loan Rowan Vine hit a hat-trick against ex-Premiership Coventry to see them progress to the fifth round for the first time in 25 years in a replay.
Phil Parkinson was starting to make this mark in a season where United`s highest League placing was fifth and later, 14th.
The U`s ended up nine points behind the play-offs in a season which saw them place a club record 15 cup games in one season after a good run in what was then the LDV Vans trophy.
They were knocked out in the Southern Area Final by rivals Southend United over two legs.
3) Vs Leamington Spar (H) 2005/6 9-1 Win
Shock Factor: 5/10
Just three and a half thousand fans watched semi-professional Leamington suffer a 9-1 thrashing in November 2005 as the club equalled their all-time highest score.
Kevin Watson, a stalwart of the Phil Parkinson era, even scored, which recently sold winger Mark Yeates also scoring a fantastic goal.
The previous 9-1 demolition of Bradford City, which occurred in 1961, saw both Bobby Hunt and Martyn King set a club record by scoring four goals apiece in that game.
Click here to see all the goals from the Leamington game.
2) Vs Huddersfield Town (H) 1947/1948 1-0 Win
Shock Factor: 10 / 10
Manager at-the-time, Ted Fenton, created the ‘F` plan to dispatch Huddersfield; Colchester United were a Southern non-league side who become the first in history ever to beat a fide from the Football League.
Huddersfield’s play was affected by the cramp conditions at Layer Road, and 16,000 fans saw Bobby Cram score the goal which gifted the U`s a one-nil win.
It also began their tradition as a giant-killing club in the world`s oldest knock-out competition.
1) Vs Leeds United (H) 3-2 Win 1970/ 1971
Shock Factor: 10/10
When Colchester played Leeds at Layer Road in 1971, Don Revie had been in charge for just under a decade and the U`s were given odds of 100/1 against to win the match.
He had taken the club from the Second Division having inherited a club with £250,000 pounds in debt.
By the time Colchester met Leeds. It was a side brimming with internationals Jack Charlton, Norman Hunter and Johnny Giles. They`d won the English Championship in 1968/9.
Colchester`s only star in a side of seven over thirties was striker Ray Crawford, himself an ex-international costing £3,000.
He scored twice as Colchester went down in history, running out with an impossible 3-2 scoreline before 16,000 fans.
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