Over the weekend, the first round of this year’s Emirates FA Cup took place, and as usual, there were a number of giant killings, shock results and big name scalps dumped out of the competition. Here at The Sports Lowdown, we take a look at those smaller sides that have brushed aside a bigger opponent to book their place in the second round.
Salford City 2-0 Notts County
On Friday night, Northern Premier League Division side Salford City dumped out League Two opposition in the shape of Notts County. With a 59 place gap between the two sides, it was the club, co-owned by former Manchester United legends and Class of 92 youngsters Nicky Butt, Paul Scholes, Ryan Giggs and the Neville brothers, Gary and Phil, that took the lead 18 seconds into the second half through Danny Webber. The Magpies looked to level the game but a stunner from Richie Allen sealed a historic win for the Manchester club, who were making their first round debut.
AFC Wimbledon 1-2 Forest Green Rovers
National League leaders Forest Green travelled to Neal Ardley’s Wimbledon and it was the non-league side that left Kingsmeadow with a trip into the second round. Darren Carter gave the visitors an early lead but Callum Kennedy leveled for the Dons midway through the first half. It wasn’t until the 93rd minute, in true FA Cup fashion, that Forest Green found the winner in the shape of Elliott Frear.
Altrincham 1-0 Barnsley
Another shock came in the shape of League One strugglers Barnsley suffering a first round defeat at National League side Altrincham. Damien Reeves’s second half goal was enough to send the non-league side through to the second round for the first time since 2001. The result adds further pressure on Tykes boss Lee Johnson who has overseen the club’s worst run in 56 years having lost seven successive matches.
Barnet 2-0 Blackpool
League Two side Barnet dumped out League One strugglers Blackpool as Martin Allen’s side booked their place in the second round. Tom Champion’s first goal of the season gave the Bees the lead, before Michael Gash headed the hosts further ahead. The seasiders failed to find a way back into the game as Barnet progress.
Coventry City 1-2 Northampton Town
League One high-flyers Coventry suffered a defeat at the Ricoh Arena at the hands of Chris Wilder’s Northampton. Nicky Adams gave the Cobblers an early lead, but the 1987 Cup winners leveled soon after through Jacob Murphy’s 25 yard strike. But Marc Richards’ header knocked the Sky Blues out of the competition.
Crewe Alexandra 0-1 Eastleigh
League One’s bottom club Crewe were knocked out by National League side Eastleigh. The Spitfires faced up against ten men for most of the second half after keeper Ben Garratt fouled Yemi Odubade outside the box and the goalkeeper was dismissed. Shortly after, the visitors were awarded a penalty when substitute keeper Dan Nizic fouled Ross Lafayette, and Ben Strevens successfully converted his spot kick to send the Spitfires through to the second round.
Plymouth Argyle 0-2 Carlisle United
Not a huge upset, but League Two leaders Plymouth suffered a home defeat at the hands of fellow League Two opposition in Carlisle. Anthony Sweeney volleyed the Cumbrians into the lead, before before Hallam Hope doubled Keith Curle’s side’s advantage before the break. The travelling fans, who made one of the longest trips in the Football League, went home happy after booking their place in the second round after condemning the Pilgrims to just their second defeat in 12 games.
Stevenage 3-0 Gillingham
League Two side Stevenage dumped out League One high-flyers Gillingham after knocking three past them at the Lamex Stadium. Steven Schumacher’s 20 yard strike gave Teddy Sheringham’s side the lead, before former Gills midfielder Chris Whelpdale doubled the hosts advantage with a header. The Boro sealed the win late on through Armand Gnanduillet, sending Stevenage through. The Boro have reached the fourth round in three of the last five seasons, but it’s their league form that has proved a struggle this season.
Bristol Rovers 0-1 Chesham United
Bristol Rovers can’t seem to win at home at the moment, and Southern League Premier Division side Chesham continued that run. The visitors had the opportunity to take the lead from the spot, but Lee Nicholls saved Dave Pearce’s effort, but with fifteen minutes remaining, Ryan Blake opened the scoring to send the non-league side through. With a gap of 75 places between them in the Football pyramid, this certainly goes down as one of the shocks of the weekend.
There were also a few draws resulting in replays that took place. National League side Aldershot Town held League One side Bradford City to a goalless draw, whilst National League North side Brackley Town came from two goals down to earn a draw with Newport County. League Two high-flyers Oxford drew 1-1 at Braintree, and Port Vale were held at home by National League South side Maidenhead United.