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U’s finding support from all quarters ahead of today’s FA Cup clash against Spurs

George Moncur, pictured in action for the U's, has Colchester's clergy rooting for him.

George Moncur, pictured in action for the U's, has Colchester's clergy rooting for him.

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Today’s huge FA Cup clash for Colchester United has been causing excitement across the town.

Right Reverend Roger Morris, the Bishop of ColchesterRight Reverend Roger Morris, the Bishop of Colchester

Premier League side Tottenham Hotspur are coming to the Weston Homes Community Stadium for the fourth-round clash.

The match, kicking off at 12.45pm, sold-out within days of tickets going on sale, and the anticipation is building around Colchester – even among non-football fans.

Civic figures around the town have been lending their support to the U’s ahead of the fixture.

Right Reverend Roger Morris, the Bishop of Colchester, said: “I’m just hoping the defence holds up.

Colchester Borough Council leader Paul SmithColchester Borough Council leader Paul Smith

“George Moncur [U’s midfielder] is a committed member of the Church of England so we are rooting for Colchester as much as we can.

“A number of local clergy are season ticket holders so may well be there at the match.

“Spurs is a tough draw, but you never know – it is the FA Cup at the end of the day and all the clichés apply.

“It should be good.”

Colchester MP Will Quince Colchester MP Will Quince

Paul Smith, leader of Colchester Borough Council, said: “I’m a big football fan, though I’m a Crystal Palace support so I will be interested in a different match.

“I’m looking forward to a Col U win and drawing Palace in the next round.

“The enthusiasm in the town ahead of the match is fantastic, the anticipation of a Premier League club coming to Colchester is great.

“The fact the ground will be sold out is fantastic, and all in all it is very good.”

Even Ipswich Town fan Tim Young, borough councillor for culture, is hoping for a U's win.Even Ipswich Town fan Tim Young, borough councillor for culture, is hoping for a U's win.

Will Quince, Colchester MP, said: “It’s exciting.

“I’m not a big football fan, but I recognise the importance of the club to the town and am very happy to support them in terms of the football and future development.

“It’s great to have 10,000-odd people coming to the town for the match, and it will be good to see the stadium full.”

Tim Young, borough councillor for culture and Ipswich Town fan said: “It is great for the town, having such a high-profile fixture, with a full stadium and I wish them the best of luck.

The fan’s view

Jon Burns, chairman of the Colchester United Supporters’ Association, said: “For the fans it’s a sweetener to a bit of a sour season, a welcome distraction.

“There’s a real buzz to have Tottenham Hotspur come here. This will be a real occasion.

“The FA Cup this season has already proven anything can happen, that’s the beauty of it, and Premiership sides like the comfort of being at home against teams they know, and maybe that gives us a small advantage. It’s about who wants it more.

“There is no pressure, the players should be afraid, and we will get out of it whatever we put in.

“Obviously we want the U’s to win but a draw and a replay is a close second, especially in our current form.”

“I was brought up in a household of Arsenal supporters so I always love to see Tottenham get beaten and I hope the U’s do their bit.”

For all the latest news ahead of the games, and updates during the match, visit our sports pages.

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