COLCHESTER United head coach John McGreal says he was always confident when his side’s Carabao Cup tie with Spurs went to penalties – because of the ‘inner belief’ they have.

The U’s stunned their Premier League opponents by winning 4-3 in the shoot-out to progress into the fourth round, after the tie had finished 0-0 after 90 minutes at the JobServe Community Stadium.

U’s keeper Dean Gerken saved Christian Eriksen’s opening penalty in the shoot-out.

And although Jevani Brown’s spot-kick was saved by Spurs goalkeeper Paulo Gazzaniga, the U’s prevailed through Tom Lapslie’s decisive penalty after Lucas Moura saw his attempt hit the woodwork.

It was the second successive round in the competition that Colchester had beaten a Premier League side on penalties, following their second-round triumph at Crystal Palace earlier this month.

McGreal said: “I was confident – the boys have got an inner belief.

“Tom has been here since he was 15 or 16 years of age – he stood up as an academy boy and he knows what’s expected of him.

“We kept saying to him ‘don’t change your mind’ and that’s all we keep saying – be positive, disciplined and don’t change your mind.

“Four of the penalty takers had taken penalties at Palace.

“Tom Lapslie was obviously injured for that game, so we knew that we were looking for that last one.

“Young Noah (Chilvers) got the plaudits last time and Tom stepped up this time.

“He’s another Academy product who puts his name on it.

“You’ve also got Deano (Gerken), who’s also from our academy, making a brilliant save and it gets the boys going again.

“We’ve missed the penalty in between with Jevani (Brown) but he had the bottle to take it as he did at Palace.

“Luckily enough, (Moura) has hit the bar and we were able to finish it off with Lapslie.”

Birthday boy Frank Nouble was also on target in the penalty shoot-out for Colchester, to cap a memorable few days for the former West Ham United youngster.

McGreal added: “It’s been a good week for Frank.

“One of his best mates got married on Sunday, it was his birthday and then he scores a penalty and we win the game of football.”