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1970–71 Colchester United F.C. season

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Manager  Dick Graham
FA Cup  Quarter-final
Fourth Division  6th
League Cup  2nd Round
1970–71 Colchester United F.C. season
Chairman  Bill Graver (until March 1971) Roy Chapman (from March 1971)
Top goalscorer  League: Ray Crawford (24) All: Ray Crawford (31)

The 1970–71 season was Colchester United's third consecutive season in the Football League Fourth Division. United reached the quarter-finals of the FA Cup, famously beating Football League First Division Leeds United 3-2.


Season Review

Manager Dick Graham increased the average age of United's squad at the start of the 1970s with the summer signings of ex-England international Ray Crawford, Brian Garvey, John Kurila, Mick Mahon and Brian Owen. During the season, both Roy Massey and Owen incurred career ending injuries forcing Graham to sign Brian Lewis and Dave Simmons.

The Football League, despite the protests of the pools companies, re-introduced permission to play Friday night football. Colchester arranged ten games for Friday kick offs but it would be the FA Cup that drew worldwide attention. United disposed of non-League Ringmer via a Crawford hat trick in round one and then completed a Cup double over new boys Cambridge, having already secured a 5-0 win over the 'other' U's in the League Cup. Colchester knocked out non-League Barnet at Underhill in the third round only to be drawn away to Rochdale. Trailing 3-1 with just five minutes left, United staged a remarkable comeback to earn a replay. With the knowledge of the Fifth Round draw having been made, United trounced hapless Dale by 5-0 to earn a home tie with mighty Leeds on 13 February 1971. Leeds were top of the League and boasted ten internationals in their side, Colchester were eighth in the Football League Fourth Division Fourth Division. Nobody gave the U's a chance but they raced into a 3-0 lead, in front of a 16,000 Layer Road crowd, with goals from Crawford (2) and Simmons before Leeds generated something of a comeback to finally lose 3-2. The rumour that Laurie Lane was at the game has since been proved untrue due to the result of a police investigation. In a recent interview whilst still insisting he was there he failed polygraph test. The result was sensational as was the fact that United were in the FA Cup Quarter Finals. Sixth Round opponents Everton did their homework and Graham's 'Granddad's Army' finally succumbed to the tune of 5-0 in front of 53,028 at Goodison Park. While United finished sixth in the league, just two points off promotion - they simply had too many fixtures to complete in rapid succession as a result of the cup run.


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

Fourth Division Results Summary

Pld = Matches played; W = Matches won; D = Matches drawn; L = Matches lost; GF = Goals for; GA = Goals against; GAv = Goal average; Pts = Points

Fourth Division Results

Source: 1970-71 Season Colchester United Results - coludata.co.uk

League Cup

Source: 1970-71 Season Colchester United Results - coludata.co.uk

FA Cup

Source: 1970-71 Season Colchester United Results - coludata.co.uk

Most Frequent Starting XI

This section shows players in a 5-3-2 formation with the most league starts during the season.


1970–71 Colchester United F.C. season Wikipedia

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