FA Cup: Paul Dickov’s Oldham knock out Liverpool
THE FA Cup threw up a host of fourth-round upsets over the weekend, with yesterday’s games in particular catching the imagination as Tottenham and Liverpool crashed out at the hands of lower-league opposition
Chelsea had to settle for a replay against Brentford, and non-league Luton Town caused the biggest shock of Saturday’s ties as they won away to Norwich City.
The biggest headlines were caused by League One side Oldham, who beat Liverpool 3-2 at Boundary Park yesterday. Striker Matt Smith, who 18 months ago was playing non-league football with Solihull Moors, had the best day of his fragmented professional career as he scored either side of Luis Suarez’s 21st of the season in the first half before Reece Wabara’s header put the Latics into the last 16 despite Joe Allen’s goal 11 minutes from time.
It was the first time Liverpool had lost away in the FA Cup to a team at least two divisions below them since defeat at non-league Worcester City in 1959.
Despite the win, Latics boss Paul Dickov’s future remains under threat after one point from eight games has left the club dangerously close to the League One relegation zone.
Chairman Simon Corney refused to be drawn on the manager’s future despite growing speculation he could be poised to wield the axe and Dickov, who last month saw most of his backroom staff sacked, was not keen to talk about it, saying: “Let me enjoy this first.
“I have spoken to Simon and it’s not been mentioned – if something was happening I would have thought he would have told me. There are a lot of things that went on that me and Simon need to talk about. You can spit your dummy out or you can roll your sleeves up and get on with it and one thing I will always do is work hard.”
On the result itself he added: “I’m proud of the players and the performance they put in. To put that in against a team of world-class players was fantastic. I know what they are capable of. I just thought the desire they had to win the game was the reason we won it. I’ve won a European medal, I was involved in FA Cup finals, played for my country, scored at Wembley but after everything that has gone on recently that was right up there at the top.”
Elsewhere, Scotland striker Ross McCormack scored what proved to be the decisive goal as Leeds beat Tottenham 2-1 at Elland Road. The former Motherwell forward netted a stunning strike five minutes into the second half to give his side breathing space after Luke Varney’s 15th-minute opener.
Clint Dempsey pulled one back for Spurs, but the Championship side held on, much to the delight of manager Neil Warnock, who was clearly riled by some of the recent criticism his team has been subjected to in light of some disappointing away results. “We’ve had negative press on some of the results lately and yet we’ve won six on the trot at home (now seven),” he said. “But in Leeds the glass is always half empty, it’s never half full in Leeds. That might be a Yorkshire trait.”
The first game of yesterday’s televised triple-header saw Chelsea escape Griffin Park with a 2-2 draw against Brentford despite falling behind twice to the League One side. Marcello Trotta firing them in front moments before half-time and Harry Forrester restoring their lead with a penalty after Oscar had equalised. They might even have clung on had goalkeeper Ross Turnbull been sent off instead of cautioned for conceding the spot-kick. But the much-maligned Fernando Torres picked a timely moment to break his latest miserable run in front of goal when he netted his first goal of 2013 to prevent the European champions crashing out of their second competition in five days and sixth in just six months.
Meanwhile, Blue Square Premier side Luton Town claimed a famous 1-0 win away to Norwich on Saturday courtesy of Scott Rendell’s 80th-minute goal.
5TH ROUND DRAW
(Ties to be played 16/17 February)
Huddersfield/Leicester v Wigan
Milton Keynes Dons v Barnsley
Oldham v Everton
Luton v Millwall
Arsenal v Blackburn Rovers
Manchester City v Leeds Utd
Manchester Utd v Reading
Middlesbrough v Brentford/Chelsea
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Thursday 20 June 2013
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