Bedlington Terriors, Gravesend and Northfleet, Dover Athletic, Chelmsford City. Now add Oxford City to that unwanted list.

Colchester United have suffered their fair share of FA Cup disappointments against non-league opposition over the years, along with successes.

But their first-round exit at home to the National League South strugglers, who ended a 48-year wait to reach round two for a second time, is up there with the worst of them.

It is difficult to find any positives from the U’s performance.

They huffed and puffed but Matt Paterson’s winner rather knocked the stuffing out of them and left them chasing the tie, resulting in a nervy, tentative performance that ultimately led to humiliation.


Many of Colchester United’s fans were understandably cheesed off at the final whistle after watching their side tumble out of the FA Cup against non-league opposition.

Some U’s supporters vented their anger and frustration at the players, as they walked off the pitch.

But despite their disappointment, to their credit many of them also stayed behind at the end to generously applaud Oxford City’s players and management as they skipped off the Weston Homes Community Stadium pitch.

It was a nice touch from the home faithful and something the visitors fully merited, after their excellent performance.


Colchester United have not drawn a blank on too many occasions at the Weston Homes Community Stadium, during John McGreal’s reign.

Their inability to find a way past Oxford City’s well-drilled defence was alarming and one of the main reasons why they now find themselves out of this season’s FA Cup.

The U’s lacked composure in front of goal, something that match-winner Matt Paterson showed in abundance for the visitors’ winner.

With loanee Nicke Kabamba not made available by his parent club Portsmouth, the U’s lacked forward options on the bench.

Their only recognised attacker among the substitutes - Sanmi Odelusi - could perhaps be forgiven for feeling a little hard done by, having remained on the bench despite his side’s predicament.


John McGreal was gracious in defeat after seeing Colchester United crash out of the FA Cup against non-league opposition.

The U’s head coach was quick to pay tribute to Oxford City and their achievement, which cannot have been particularly easy given the nature of his side’s painful defeat.

McGreal also alluded to the Weston Homes Community Stadium ambiance – or lack of it – in his post-match interviews.

With only one stand open for home supporters, he admitted it was an “eerie” atmosphere and that they missed the noise of the South Stand.

But the U’s boss was also quick to point out that they could not use that as an excuse for his side’s defeat.


Colchester United’s players wore armbands sporting poppies in their FA Cup tie against Oxford City, to commemorate military personnel who have died in war.

It was their last home game prior to Remembrance Day next Sunday and in our Garrison town, served as a of the sacrifices made by so many who have fought in two world wars and other conflicts, to secure and protect our freedom.

Football stirs the emotions; the U’s defeat on Saturday represented the highs and lows of the sport.

But while it matters to so many millions up and down the country, it is ultimately just a game.

The presence of military at yesterday’s game served as timely reminder of that.