Colchester United: Cut-outs of fans if play-offs go ahead

Cut-outs are being used in Australia's NRL
Cut-outs are being used in Australia's National Rugby League

How can you be inside a stadium to watch a play-off game when it is played behind closed doors under anti-coronavirus measures?

The short answer is you can't.

But perhaps, if you are a Colchester United fan, a cut-out mask of your own face can.

The English Football League is expected to approve the ending of the League Two season because of the pandemic, but maintain promotion and relegation across their three divisions.

Such a move would mean automatic promotion for Crewe, Swindon and Plymouth and, in all likelihood, play-off games between Exeter and Colchester, and Cheltenham and Northampton, with the winners to meet for a place in League One next term.

In expectation of that, Colchester are offering supporters the chance to have a cut-out of their face attached to a seat inside their ground for the home leg against Exeter.

And if the game takes place on Father's Day, 21 June, they can choose to have their dad's face put there instead.

It is an idea clubs in other countries, including Germany's Bundesliga, and Australia's National Rugby League competition, have also implemented.

The Colchester cut-outs - which will cost £25 and go on sale when the play-offs are confirmed - will remain in place for any behind-closed-doors home matches at the start of the 2020-21 season.

"It will make such a difference to see our fans in the stands - even cut-out ones," said Colchester midfielder Harry Pell.