Football News: Magic of the Cup as Chelsea and Manchester City exit

 

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Magic of the Cup as Chelsea and Manchester City exit
Image from: www.backpagefootball.com

Over recent seasons it has been claimed that the FA Cup had lost its magic.

Not today, the magic of the cup seems to have been reignited with some pretty massive upsets today in the 4th round.

Manchester City were dumped out of by a well organised and hard working Middlesborough, the result was well deserved as well. Man City rotated a little with Joe Hart rested and Willy Caballero starting in goal and young Dedryck Boyata starting at centre half alongside Vincent Kompany. City dominated possession but lacked a cutting edge in front of goal, however Middlesborough looked a threat on the counter attack and in the second half took the lead through on loan Chelsea youngster Patrick Bamford, a mistake by Fernando allowed Bamford to squeeze home and shock the home faithful. Man City tried to get back on level terms, bringing on Eden Dzeko and Frank Lampard, but Middlesborough defended resolutley and got their further reward in stoppage time at the end of the game when they broke with numbers and Spanish striker Kike finished under the body of Caballero as the Etihad emptied of all but the jubilant Boro fans who had made the trip.

However it was not the biggest shock of the day as Premier League leaders Chelsea, surrendered a 2-0 advantage at home to League One Bradford City. The bantams are not unused to cup upsets, having made the League Cup Final in 2013 claiming a few famous scalps along the way. Chelsea took a commanding lead inside the first 40 minutes with goals from Gary Cahill and Ramires, but the Bantams gave themselves a lifeline with a goal veteran striker Jon Stead just before the break. Bradford continued to work hard and took the lead through former Chelsea youngster Felipe Morais in the 75th minute. Scotsman Andy Halliday then gave Bradford a shock 3-2 lead before substitute Mark Yeates tapped in a 4th deep into injury time to embarrass Jose Mourinho's multi-million pound squad and secure a 5th round berth for Bradford.

Only the evening prior League 2 Cambridge United forced a replay at Old Trafford with a 0-0 draw with Manchester United in another shock.

Leicester City produced a late come back to stun Tottenham Hotspur 2-1 with a 90th minute goal by Ghanian Jeffrey Schlupp.

Blackburn Rovers also stunned Premiership opposition with a 3-1 win over Swansea City in the days early kick off.

Birmingham City lost out 2-1 to West Bromwich Albion, Reading won 2-1 at Cardiff City, Derby County prevailed 2-0 at Pride Park against Chesterfield while Crystal Palace overcame Southampton 3-2 at St Marys to continue their impressive start to life under new boss Alan Pardew.

There will be replays at Bramall Lane and Craven Cottage as Preston North End drew 1-1 with Sheffield United and Sunderland labored to a goalless draw with Fulham.

There is a chance for a further upset at Anfield this evening as Liverpool host Bolton Wanderers as Neil Lennon and Brendon Rodgers sides meet at 17.30 hours.

Written by Dave Laurie

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