Sunday, 29 January 2017

FA Cup Fourth Round Review

After a scintillating third round was followed by some upsets in the resulting replays, the fourth round of the FA Cup went even better with two non-league sides creating history while some top flight sides were humbled.

Friday night saw the opening tie of the round as Championship side Derby County hosted Premier League champions Leicester City.

The Foxes were gifted an early lead as Darren Bent converted into his own net inside eight minutes. However, the Rams attacker redeemed himself with a leveller on 21 minutes. Craig Bryson completed the comeback for the hosts just before the interval but they were denied the win late on as Wes Morgan struck to force a replay after a 2-2 draw.

Liverpool rang the changes as they hosted Championship side Wolverhampton Wanderers.

The Reds were stunned by an opener from Richard Stearman inside 53 seconds before Andreas Weimann doubled the lead four minutes before half-time.  Liverpool dominated possession but were blunt in attack until a lifeline came on 86 minutes from Divock Origi but his effort was to be only a consolation as Wolves held on for a famous 2-1 win.

A Lancashire derby at Ewood Park saw Championship side Blackburn Rovers hosting League Two side Blackpool.

Rovers started the better of the two sides with Sam Gallagher giving them the lead inside nine minutes before Elliot Bennett doubled the lead in the 22nd minute. Blackpool's afternoon got worse rather than better as they went down to ten men with the dismissal of Kelvin Mellor on 65 minutes on their way to the 2-0 defeat.

Burnley hosted Championship side Bristol City hoping to avoid an upset at Turf Moor.

They did just that as they secured a 2-0 win with goals in either half starting with Sam Vokes' opener on 44 minutes ahead of a sublime effort from Steven Defour on 69 minutes.

Chelsea avoided an upset as they eased past Championship side Brentford with a 4-0 rout.

The Blues went ahead in the 14th minute with a strike from Willian with an effort from Pedro doubling the lead seven minutes later. The win was safe by the 82nd as Branislav Ivanovic added a third before Michy Batshuayi converted a fourth from the penalty spot.

An all top flight battle saw Crystal Palace hosting Manchester City at  Selhurst Park. The Eagles looked to be going into the break having kept City out but were foiled by a 43rd minute opener from Raheem Sterling. City doubled the lead on 71 minutes via Leroy Sane before Yaya Toure completed a 3-0 win in added time.

National League side Lincoln City staged the upset of the round as they stunned Championship leaders Brighton and Hove Albion with a 3-1 win.

As expected, Brighton took the lead with Richie Towell striking on 24 minutes but the Imps hit back with an Alan Power penalty on 57 minutes before an unfortunate own goal from Fikayo Tomori gave the hosts a dream 2-1 lead.Dreams became reality as Theo Robinson confirmed a superb 3-1 win and first ever spot in the fifth round for the Imps.

Middlesbrough avoided an upset as they edged a 1-0 win over League Two side Accrington Stanley. The winning goal came on 68 minutes as Stewart Downing struck for the hosts.

Another upset came as League One side Oxford United stunned Championship high-flyer's Newcastle United with a 3-0 victory. The Magpies fell behind just after half-time as Kane Hemmings put the hosts ahead and Newcastle missed the chance to level as Aleksandar Mitrovic saw a penalty saved.

Curtis Nelson doubled the lead on 79 minutes before Toni Martinez completed the shock win in the 87th minute.

League One side Rochdale were humbled 4-0 by Championship side Huddersfield Town. The visitors went ahead through Collin Quaner before Isaiah Brown doubled the lead from the penalty spot.A brace in the 72nd and 84th minutes from Michael Hefele sealed the win.

A seven goal thriller at White Hart Lane saw Tottenham avoid suffering an upset to League Two side Wycombe Wanderers.  The Chairboys stunned the hosts as Paul Hayes swept in a sublime opener on 23 minutes before doubling the lead with a penalty on 36 minutes.

Spurs fought back with two goals in four minutes after the hour as Son Heung-Min struck ahead of Vincent Janssen's leveller from the penalty spot. Garry Thompson restored the lead for the visitors with just seven minutes to go but their hopes of a famous win were dashed by two late goals as Dele Alli levelled on 89 minutes and Son Heung-Min sealed a 4-3 win in added time.

Arsenal eased past Southampton with a comfortable 5-0 win over the Saints. The Gunners raced into a 2-0 lead via a brace from Danny Welbeck in the 15th and 22nd minutes. Former Saints attacker, Theo Walcott ended any hopes the hosts had of a comeback as he scored a hat-trick in the 35th, 68th, and 84th minutes.

Sunday's action began at The Den as League One side Millwall shocked Watford with a 1-0 win. The crucial strike came with just five minutes left of the 90 as Steve Morison sealed a spot in the fifth round for the Lions.

Another top flight side stunned was Hull City as they were defeated 4-1 by Championship side Fulham. The Cottagers went ahead with a 17th minute strike from Sone Aluko before Evandro Goebel levelled just after half-time.

Chris Martin restored the lead for the hosts before strikes from Ryan Sessegnon and Stefan Johansen completed the successful afternoon for the hosts.

Another huge shock came at Gander Green Lane as National League side Sutton United upset Championship side Leeds United with a 1-0 win.

The hosts took the surprise lead on 53 minutes as Jamie Collins slotted in from the penalty spot and the Whites woes got worse with the dismissal of Liam Cooper eight minutes from the end.

The final tie of the weekend came from Old Trafford as holders Manchester United hosted Championship side Wigan Athletic.

A battling first half from the Latics ended with them going behind to a headed effort from Marouane Fellaini and United were two goals to the good with a header from Chris Smalling on 56 minutes. The win was sealed for the hosts by strikes in the 74th and 82nd minutes from Henrikh Mkhitaryan and Bastian Schweinsteiger.