Football | Biggest FA Cup third round giant killings
The FA Cup is one of the biggest club competitions in the world and the drama steps up a notch after last night’s third round draw.
It is the only competition where non-league sides get the opportunity to potentially come up against one of big boys from the Premier League and the Championship, who come into the draw at this stage.
As well as the financial rewards of coming up against a top team, there’s also the chance of pulling off a major shock and there has been no shortage of them in the past.
Here we look through just some of the big FA Cup shocks to hit the headlines over the years.
Hereford United 2-1 Newcastle United – 1972
There will not be many football fans in the country that will not have seen the footage from this game, and John Motson’s commentary makes it all the more iconic.
Ronnie Radford etched himself into FA Cup history with his wonder strike to send the tie to extra time, before Ricky George netted the winning goal for the Southern League side.
Wrexham 2-1 Arsenal – 1972
Arsenal, the defending champions, were unceremoniously dumped out of the FA Cup by a Mickey Thomas-inspired Wrexham.
Trailing 1-0, the former Manchester United and Wales winger slotted a free-kick past David Seaman to level matters and then Steve Watkin struck the winner two minutes from time.
Shrewsbury 2-1 Everton – 2003
Shrewsbury managed by Everton’s most successful captain Kevin Ratcliffe caused the upsets of all upsets.
The Shrews were battling for their lives to stay in the Football League, but defied the odds and 34-year-old striker Nigel Jemson was the hero on the day netting both goals either side of Niclas Alexandersson’s strike.
Sutton 2-1 Coventry – 1989
This is arguably the biggest giantkilling of them all. Coventry were in the old First Division while Sutton plied their trade in the Conference.
The Sky Blues had won the competition 19 months previously, but Sutton took the lead through Tony Rains, and though David Phillips equalised, Matthew Hanlan volleyed the non-league side into the history books.
It took another 24 years for a non-league outfit to beat a team from the top division, as Luton Town beat Norwich City 1-0 thanks to Scott Rendell’s strike 10 minutes from time in 2013.
Stevenage 3-1 Newcastle – 2011
It’s easily the biggest shock in recent seasons with the League Two side comfortably seeing off Premier League Newcastle United.
Boro completely outplayed the Magpies on the day with Stacy Long giving the lower league side the lead, before Michael Bostwick doubled their advantage.
Joey Barton pulled one back for Alan Pardew’s side, but Peter Winn was on hand to book Stevenage’s spot in the fourth round.