Five great FA Cup upsets


London (AFP) – Non-league Lincoln City claimed a piece of FA Cup history on Saturday when they stunned Premier League side Burnley 1-0 in the fifth round at Turf Moor.

AFP Sport recalls five other stunning upsets that have marked the world’s oldest cup competition:

Hereford United 2 Newcastle United 1 (February 1972)

Perhaps the most fondly remembered FA Cup upset saw non-league Hereford claim a sensational victory over top-flight Newcastle at a mud-spattered Edgar Street. Having been held to a 2-2 draw by the minnows in their initial meeting, Newcastle took an 82nd-minute lead in the replay through striker Malcolm Macdonald. But Ronnie Radford slammed home an unforgettable 30-yard equaliser three minutes later and Ricky George hit the winner in extra time.

Sunderland 1 Leeds United 0 (May 1973)

Bob Stokoe’s Division Two Sunderland side were given little chance in the 1973 final against Don Revie’s all-conquering Leeds, who were defending the crown they had won 12 months previously. But Ian Porterfield gave them a first-half lead and goalkeeper Jim Montgomery produced a stunning double-save in the second period, leaving manager Stokoe to jig across the pitch in delight at the final whistle.

Liverpool 0 Wimbledon 1 (May 1988)

Newly crowned league champions Liverpool were overwhelming favourites against a Wimbledon team who had been playing non-league football just 11 years previously. However, Lawrie Sanchez headed the ‘Crazy Gang’ in front before Dave Beasant became the first goalkeeper to save a penalty in the cup final when he thwarted Liverpool striker John Aldridge.

Sutton United 2 Coventry City 1 (January 1989)

Coventry had won the FA Cup 19 months previously and were riding high in the old First Division ahead of their trip to non-league Sutton, who were managed by English teacher Barrie Williams. But Tony Rains and Matthew Hanlan scored to take Sutton into the fourth round and etch their names in FA Cup legend. It would be 24 years before another non-league team eliminated top-flight opposition, with Luton Town beating Norwich City in 2013.

Wrexham 2 Arsenal 1 (January 1992)

The ultimate David and Goliath encounter pitted reigning league champions Arsenal against Welsh minnows Wrexham, who went into the game at the foot of English football’s fourth tier. Arsenal went ahead through Alan Smith, but 37-year-old former Manchester United winger Mickey Thomas curled in a free-kick to equalise with 10 minutes remaining before Steve Watkins claimed a late winner.

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