FA Cup shocks: A look at some third-round upsets
FA Cup shocks

FA Cup shocks: A look at some third-round upsets

The FA Cup third round takes place between January 4-8 when more lower-league sides will look to cause an upset.

Last season, Cambridge stunned Premier League Newcastle with a 1-0 victory at St James’ Park, Joe Ironside firing the League One side into the fourth round.

Here we look at five other famous third-round FA Cup shocks.

Crawley 3 Leeds 0 (2021)

Marcelo Bielsa’s side were reeling from two goals inside three second-half minutes from Nick Tsaroulla and Ashley Nadesan before Jordan Tunnicliffe finished them off with 20 minutes remaining. To rub salt in the wounds Crawley even handed a debut to former reality star Mark Wright as a late substitute but
the only way was out of the cup for Leeds.

Newport 2 Leicester 1 (2019)

League Two side Newport shocked Leicester, the Premier League champions just three years earlier. Padraig Amond’s 85th-minute penalty fired the Welsh side into the fourth round as 2-1 winners after Marc Albrighton was guilty of a needless handball in the area. The penalty came just three minutes after Rachid Ghezzal had levelled for Leicester, who had trailed since Newport’s well-worked opener from Jamille Matt from Robbie Willmott’s cross.

Wrexham 2 Arsenal 1 (1992)

The Gunners were the reigning league champions, Wrexham were bottom of the old fourth division – there was only going to be one result at the Racecourse Ground. Arsenal had taken the lead through Alan Smith but, with 10 minutes to go, 37-year-old Mickey Thomas unleashed a 25-yard free-kick past David Seaman for the equaliser. The Welsh side could sense an upset and Steve Watkin popped up late on to score the winner and send their illustrious opponents crashing out.

Sutton 2 Coventry 1 (1989)

Coventry arrived in Surrey just 18 months after winning the 1987 FA Cup and were riding high in the top flight. It appeared to be a case of ‘no contest’ against the non-leaguers. But they were left stunned as Tony Rains and Matthew Hanlan became the goalscoring heroes for a team fashioned by English teacher
Barrie Williams. Both scorers became instant celebrities, appearing on Terry Wogan’s chat show the following Monday.

Hereford 2 Newcastle 1 (1972)

Southern League Hereford side had earned a 2-2 draw at St James’ Park in February 1972 and were given little chance of emulating that feat in the replay. It was all going to plan when Newcastle took the lead in a game which had been postponed three times by bad weather. But Hereford grew stronger as the match went on and Ronnie Radford equalised with a long-range thunderbolt to take the game into extra time, where Ricky George hit the winner.

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