Who Are Ya? - Colchester United
How Long Have You Supported Colchester United?
Last Season's League Finish?
What Do You Think Of Your Manager?
He is another internal manager that none of the fans really wanted, but considering he is learning on the job, and has had to deal with a lot of injuries, he is doing an okay job. One criticism of him is he will play players out of position.
Hopes/Expectations This Season?
With the squad we have got the expectations are the play-offs. Despite our usual spate of injuries, that is still a realistic aim for this season. We had a slow start, but we have only lost one in the last eight with 17 points, so we are well on course for the play-offs. With our best two players of last season, Guthrie and Dickinson, due back for the second-half of the season, that can only help.
One(s) To Watch?
Mandron is our top scorer with six goals, but most of his best work is done outside the box. Szmodics is probably our danger man. He is just back from yet another injury, and scored a cracking goal to win our last game against Barnet. Our standout defender is Inniss, who we have got on loan from Crystal Palace.
Top Seven Predictions?
Luton, Notts County, Swindon, Exeter, Coventry, Lincoln and Colchester.
Morecambe and Chesterfield
Thoughts on Lincoln City?
You are so lucky to have the Cowley's as your management team. When they were managing our local team Braintree, a lot of our fans would have liked them managing us. Teams who win the National League usually do well in their first season in League 2, and the fact they made some astute signings like Bostwick, I fancied them to make the play-offs , at least, so bought their points on the spread at 71.
Random Fact About Your Club?
We reached the 5th Round of the FA Cup in 1948, as a non-league team. Something that was bettered by yourselves last season.
What are your proudest and most embarrassing moments as a Colchester United Supporter?
The proudest moment as a Colchester supporter is without doubt the day we beat Leeds 3-2 in the 5th Round of the FA Cup in 1971. Leeds were the best team in England at the time, and we were in the old Division Four.
The most embarrassing would also have to be in the same competition when we lost 4-1 to the mighty Beddlington Terriers. Though losing 1-0 at home to Oxford City in this seasons competition, runs it close.
Do you have a Supporters Trust and what role do they play at the Club?
We have a Supporters Association, but they don't have a role to play at the club, as far as I know, other than running coaches for away games.
Which was your favourite match involving Colchester United?
The aforementioned game against Leeds would be the favourite, but the 4th Round replay when we beat Rochdale 5-0 to set up that Leeds game, runs it close.
Which was your least favourite match involving Colchester United?
Hard to pick one match, but any of the many times we have lost to non-league opposition in the Cup. The saddest game for me was the last one played at Layer Road, when we lost 1-0 to Stoke. Sad in the fact we would never play at Layer Road again, and we were relegated from the Championship at the same time.
You have a relatively new stadium. Did the supporters have much of a say in it? What things would you change or keep about it if you did it again?
The supporters didn't have any say it. If they did they would have liked to have a supporters bar, and this is something we still strive to have now. The main thing the fans would like done to the stadium is to have the corners filled in. Not necessarily with seats, but it would improve the atmosphere.
Is it as much of an open, identikit, breezeblock stadium as it appears to be on TV?
Yes, definitely. Shrewsbury and Chesterfield have very similar ones, built about the same time.
Would you have preferred to have stayed at Layer Road and modernise the Ground, or was the move to a new stadium the right choice, and if so, why?
I like most fans would have preferred to stay at Layer Road, but it was not an option. There was no room to expand, and modernisation would have meant replacing all the stands. Layer Road was so out of date that we had been looking for a new stadium for at least 20 years before we got one.
In 2011, your Chairman said that he'd be scaling back his yearly investment (at that point, around £1.5m) and reducing it by £300k a year to a point that he'd then be contributing nothing. Did that happen?
Yes it has. We are also one of the few clubs who abide by the Financial Fair Play regulations to the letter. The Chairman puts his money into our Category 2 Academy these days. His aim is to one day have a first team that all came up through this academy.
What's the general opinion about Mikael Mandron? He has scored a few goals, but was he worth the money you paid for him?
There is mixed feelings amongst the fans. As mentioned in the one to watch, he is very skillful for a big man, but it is all outside the penalty area. Most of his goals have been simple tap ins, but I wouldn't call him a fox-in -the-box striker. As for his fee, all our transfer dealings are undisclosed fee, so nobody knows what we paid for him.
We had Matthew Briggs on trial during the summer - did we dodge a bullet by not offering him a contract given Colchester released him in the summer?
Most fans were disappointed we released Briggs because we thought he could have done a job as a left wing back until Dickinson returned in the New Year. While he was with us he is another that spent a lot of time injured. When he played he was good going forward, but not so good defending. I wouldn't say you dodged a bullet, but you are probably better off without him.