“We could easily go and win” – Colchester United’s Owen Garvan on Cup tie against Tottenham
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Owen Garvan insists that he would not see it as a shock, if Colchester United were to beat Premier League high-fliers Tottenham in this Saturday’s FA Cup fourth round tie.
The struggling U’s have not won a league game for 98 days, and have only won once in League One in their last 18 outings, a terrible record that has sent them cast adrift, seven points shy of safety – and that’s effectively eight points, due to a woeful goal difference.
By contrast, star-studded Tottenham are currently in fourth spot in the top-tier, and occupying the last Champions League spot, going into the last 15 games of the season.
Fresh from an impressive 3-1 win at London rivals Crystal Palace on Saturday, Mauricio Pochettino’s Spurs team will therefore be starting as red-hot favourites to coast into the fifth round of the Cup, in front of a capacity crowd at the Weston Homes Community Stadium on Saturday lunchtime (12.45pm kick-off).
However, Garvan is not so convinced that it will be a stroll-in-the-park for Tottenham. Instead, the ex-Ipswich Town and Crystal Palace midfielder believes the U’s have a good chance of upsetting the odds, and the form-book.
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“I’m not lying to you, I want to win the game and I want to progress in the Cup. I want to ultimately win it,” insisted Garvan.
“There is pressure on every football game. I think people see Tottenham as a good team in the Premier League, but the way that football is, we could easily go and win that game.
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“I won’t be over-awed by the occasion. They’ve got a couple of good players, but I’m expecting a tight game, and I think it can go either way.
“Like Scunthorpe (3-0 away defeat on Saturday), that could have gone either way until they scored their first goal, after which we might as well have packed our bags and gone home really, which a very bad sign for a team.
“But it should be a completely different atmosphere on Saturday, and I’m hoping that Colchester fans will get there early to make it a good cup atmosphere, even though that might be difficult with the early kick-off time.
“I think it will be a tight game, but hopefully we can win it,” added Garvan.
Saturday’s showdown is already a sell-out – the tickets were all sold before they even went on general sale – so a crowd of around 10,000 is assured.
The match is also being screened live on BT Sport, so it promises to be a big occasion.
Although the U’s prime aim must still be too retain their League One status, into a ninth successive season, Garvan does not see the Tottenham game as just a glamorous side-show.
“I don’t think it’s irrelevant, to our main target this season,” said Garvan.
“The FA Cup is one of the biggest competitions in the country, and we want to progress, as simple as that.
“Over 90 minutes, anything can happen, and we could easily beat them.
“It wouldn’t be a shock in my eyes, if we can roll up our sleeves and show the manager (Kevin Keen) as players that we want to work hard and we want to get good performances for him.
“We are crating half-chances, but we need to score goals. We have not scored a lot of goals now since the new manager came in (on December 21),
“We need to improve on that, and we need to do it sharpish,” added Garvan.