Paul Stewart column: FA Cup shocks continue the cup's tradition
Last weekend saw the third round of the FA Cup and it provided us with what has come to be expected from the illustrious competition '“ giantkillings.
Four Premier League teams were knocked out by lower league opposition, an occurrence which is something that has become commonplace in this competition over the years.
Last year, it was Sutton United who managed to string together an impressive series of results which propelled them just shy of the quarter-finals – a feat achieved by Lincoln City the previous year – when they lost out to Arsenal and a place in the last eight.
The weekend was kickstarted by my old club, Tottenham Hotspur, as they progressed to the fourth round with an emphatic 7-0 victory over Tranmere Rovers as Fernando Llorente bagged a hat-trick.
In 1991, I actually played against Blackpool at Bloomfield Road for Tottenham in the third round on the road to Wembley; the year we won the FA Cup by beating Brian Clough’s Nottingham Forest in the final.
One of the biggest upsets of the weekend was League Two side’s Newport County’s 2-1 victory over former Premier League champions Leicester City in a match they had led 1-0 for 70 minutes.
Newport now progress into the next round and face Tony Pulis’ Championship contenders Middlesborough at the Riverside.
Newly-promoted Premier League outfit Fulham fell victim to League Two’s Oldham Athletic.
Oldham pulled off the upset with 2-1 win at Craven Cottage with two late goals after trailing 1-0 going into the last quarter of an hour.
A late penalty kickstarted Oldham’s revival and was topped off in the 88th minute with a goal from Callum Lang, ending Fulham’s cup hopes.
Another side to be knocked out by lower tier opposition was Huddersfield Town, who are currently fighting Premier League relegation.
They faced Bristol City who, last season, put together an impressive run in the Carabao Cup.
They took the scalps of three Premier League sides before defeating Jose Mourinho’s Manchester United in the quarter finals and eventually losing to Manchester City in the last four.
Lee Johnson’s side took a narrow 1-0 victory at home to secure their place in the fourth round and pile further woes on David Wagner’s side.
Bristol will be brimming with confidence and will look to channel last season’s success to progress further in the competition.
Looking again at a Premier League side in for a long relegation battle this year, Cardiff City were in action against League One side Gillingham.
Some great defending throughout the course of the game from the Gills kept the scores even until the 81st minute when Elliott List was on hand to seal Cardiff’s fate and advance Gillingham to the fourth round.
Finally, I think National League side Barnet deserve to get a very honourable mention for their 1-0 victory at Championship xlub Sheffield United.
Barnet sit 15th at the lower end of the Conference, whilst Sheffield United sit third in the Championship and will be fighting for promotion this year.
It was an outstanding win Barnet and secures them a place in the fourth round where they host Brentford.
I certainly look forward to what awaits us in round four.