By Simon Gray
The FA Cup Fourth Round is almost upon us and there are only 16 places up for grabs in the Fifth Round. Round four has thrown up some giant-killings over the years; here are just some of the many.
Hull City 0-1 Crawley Town
League Two club Crawley Town travelled to the KC Stadium having already defeated one Championship side in the form of Bristol City in the Third Round but Hull would provide a sterner test being involved in a race for the play offs where as Bristol City were fighting relegation.
Crawley, who had only just been promoted into the football league managed to complete another cup upset with another 1-0 win thanks to another goal from Matt Tubbs, his 18th of the season.
45 places separated the two sides before kick off but Crawley showed that it did not mean anything when it comes to the FA Cup, containing Hull well and countering them superbly.
Crawley would go onto lose to Premier League Stoke City in round five but once again showed that they were a club on the up.
Hull would reach the final two years later but sadly lose to Arsenal at Wembley.
This year, Hull are in the Premier League having been promoted last season and travel to Championship side Fulham this weekend. Crawley are back in League Two after a brief venture into League One but lost in the FA Cup to League One Bristol Rovers this season in a First Round replay.
Norwich City 0-1 Luton Town
Luton Town became the first non-league side to beat Premier League opposition since 1989 when they travelled to Carrow Road and defeated Norwich City.
Scott Rendell scored the only goal of the game late on to book the Hatters’ place in round five.
Not since non-league Sutton United beat Coventry City last century had anything happened like this and it was a joyous occasion for everyone involved with the club.
The result meant Luton would go onto the Fifth Round to face Milwall at home but would lose the match 3-0.
Since the result, Luton have been promoted to League Two and are going strong this season as they push for promotion to League One.
Norwich have since been relegated to the Championship and promoted back to the Premier League only to be relegated once more last season and now find themselves just five points off the play off places.
In the FA Cup this season, Luton went out in the Third Round to League Two rivals Accrington Stanley, missing out on a trip to Premier League Middlesbrough.
Norwich went out at the same stage, losing to Premier League Southampton despite forcing a replay.
A special mention to Oldham Athletic, who also caused a cup upset in the Fourth Round of the 2012-13 FA Cup, defeating Liverpool 3-2 at Boundary Park. The League One side beat a Premier League Liverpool team with the likes of Raheem Sterling, Daniel Sturridge and Luis Suarez in the starting XI.
Sheffield United 1-1 Fulham
Replay: Fulham 0-1 Sheffield United (AET)
League One Sheffield United pulled off their second giant killing of the 2013-14 FA Cup, beating another Premier League side, this time in the form of Fulham at Craven Cottage after drawing at Bramall Lane.
The Blades defeated Aston Villa to reach the Fourth Round and nearly beat Fulham at the first time of asking if it was not for Hugo Rodallega’s late equaliser.
Rodallega’s goal meant a replay at Craven Cottage and it looked like neither side would be able to score the winning goal but then in the last minute of extra time, when it looked like penalties would be the deciding factor, up popped Shaun Miller to head the Blades into round five.
Sheffield United would go onto reach the semi-final of the FA Cup, losing to Hull City at Wembley.
Since the match nearly three years ago, Fulham have been relegated to the Championship but are now pushing for the play offs after taking a couple of seasons to find their feet in the new division. Sheffield United sit top of League One and after years of near promotions back to the second tier of English football, this looks to be their year.
In the FA Cup this year, Fulham host Premier League Hull in the Fourth Round where as Sheffield United lost to Bolton in round two.
Chelsea 2-4 Bradford City
Perhaps the greatest giant killing in FA Cup history, League One Bradford City trailed Premier League leaders Chelsea 2-0 after goals from Gary Cahill and Ramires as they approached half time but then something magical happened…
First, Jon Stead pulled a vital goal back four minutes before the break, 2-1.
Then after 30 minutes of neither side grabbing a goal, up stepped Filipe Morais, who was released by Chelsea’s academy, to tap in the equaliser in the 75th minute, 2-2.
But it got better for Bradford from there, as Chelsea looked for a winner, Bradford would break forward with nine minutes to go. Morais running down the right, finding Stead, who teed up Andy Halliday to score what could be the winner for the away side, 2-3.
Halliday’s stunning finish had the Bradford fans dreaming, but no one could comprehend what was to come. With Chelsea desperately trying to find an equaliser, in the 94th minute Bradford would come forward once more and Stead would be at the heart of it again, this time setting up substitute Mark Yeates to seal the win, 2-4.
The Bradford fans were sent into pandemonium, the League One side had scored four goals away at soon to be Premier League Champions Chelsea.
Bradford would go onto beat Premier League Sunderland at Valley Parade before losing in the Quarter Finals to Championship side Reading following a replay.
As said earlier, Chelsea would go onto lift the Premier League trophy and the League Cup.
This season, Bradford are pushing for promotion from League One after narrowly missing out through the play offs last season.
Chelsea are looking to regain their Premier League crown after a disappointing 2015-16 season where they finished in 10th place.
In the FA Cup, Chelsea face local rivals Brentford at Stamford Bridge in round four where as Bradford were on the wrong end of an upset themselves, losing to Accrington Stanley at Valley Parade in the First Round.
Shrewsbury Town 3-2 Sheffield Wednesday
An injury time winner from Jack Grimmer sent League One Shrewsbury Town into the Fifth Round of the FA Cup last season, at the expense of Championship high-flyer’s Sheffield Wednesday.
Shrewsbury defeated another Championship side in the form of Cardiff City to reach round four and were hoping for another big scalp.
Wednesday, who were chasing promotion to the Premier League took the lead through Lewis McGugan’s 35 yard free kick but Jean-Louis Akpa Akpro levelled just after half time.
McGugan regained Wednesday’s advantaged with just under 15 minutes to go but substitute Simon Whalley equalised three minutes from time to what many thought would send the tie to a replay at Hillsbrough.
Then, in the 97th minute, defender Grimmer headed the winner to send Shrewsbury into the last 16 of the FA Cup for the first time in 25 years.
Shrewsbury went on to lose in the Fifth Round to Manchester United with Wednesday missing out on Championship promotion through the play offs.
This season, Shrewsbury are fighting relegation from League One whilst Wednesday are mounting another promotion bid.
In the FA Cup, Shrewsbury lost to League One counterparts Fleetwood Town in a replay. Sheffield Wednesday were knocked out in the Third Round to Premier League Middlesbrough at the Riverside.