Colchester United Chairman Robbie Cowling has issued the following statement:
I hope everyone is looking forward to Christmas. I’m certainly looking forward to a few days where I don’t have to do very much. I can’t say I’ll be sad to see out 2020 but at least we go in to 2021 with light at the end of what has been a very long tunnel.
Crowds in Stadiums
Colchester is fortunately in Tier Two so we can still allow up to 2,000 spectators into our stadium on matchdays. We have currently sold just shy of 1,000 match permits and that number is likely to hit around 1,200 if we don’t suddenly get moved into Tier Three.
There are clearly a number of factors which are keeping our fans from coming to the games at the stadium and all of them are understandable.
1. The club have been selling the matches as a season permit on the first hand and then more recently as a multi-match permit. We understand that not everyone can commit to multiple games.
2. There are no guarantees that access to the stadium will still be granted come the day of each match.
3. Despite the club’s best efforts to ensure the stadium is safe, not everyone feels like going to an event where there will be up to 2,000 other attendees.
First of all, I would like to assure you all that the measures we have taken to make our stadium safe are above and beyond what was expected and I would argue that we have taken matters further than any other club in the EFL. I would never try to persuade any of you to attend the stadium if you don’t feel right about it. However, I might try to twist your arm to buy an iFollow pass as an alternative.
To get as close to the maximum allowed capacity as we can for the games over Christmas, we will make the fixtures against Cheltenham on December 29th and then Tranmere on January 2nd available to fans that buy just those single matches.
These games will only be available online twenty four hours before kick-off but only to those that have previous CUFC match purchasing history and have an online account that was registered before the 25th December 2020.
Taking the Knee
Our players will be ‘Taking the Knee’ again this Saturday and I want to assure all of you that they do so as a show of solidarity against racial discrimination. Colchester United is against any forms of discrimination and I know that the overwhelming majority of our supporters feel the same way. I hope everyone can show their support for the way our players have chosen to portray this message.
A few weeks ago, eleven year old Ashton Rees sent the club the £10 he won in a football manager competition. Instead of spending his winnings on sweets or toys, like most eleven year olds, he wanted to donate his winnings towards Eddie’s new costume.
Realising he had the chance to tap into a budding football genius just days after losing against Exeter, Steve Ball gave Ashton a call to bounce a few ideas off him. Steve is very secretive about what they discussed but low and behold Colchester’s form picked up.
Ashton came to the ground yesterday to watch the team train, (from a good distance I might add), and on this occasion, I know the advice he has given Steve. Obviously I can’t divulge it because it would give the game away but let’s just say Steve appreciated the advice.
This just shows what great fans we have and what a good sport Steve is. Can I just add that if there’s any eleven year old’s with great advice for a club chairman then keep it to yourself because I was sixty a couple of weeks ago so I’m officially a stubborn and grumpy old man.
No doubt I’ll see many of you at the game on Saturday and hopefully many more of you at games in 2021. I hope you all have a great Christmas and in the words of the late and great John Lennon “I hope it’s a good one, without any tiers”.
Up the U’s