Stay up to date with notifications from The Independent

Notifications can be managed in browser preferences.

The biggest FA Cup shocks in the history of the game

Lincoln's historic victory over Burnley is the latest in a long list of FA Cup shocks that stretch back decades in the history of the competition

Saturday 18 February 2017 15:57 GMT
Lincoln already know what it takes to knock out at a Premier League side
Lincoln already know what it takes to knock out at a Premier League side (Getty)

National League Lincoln knocked Premier League Burnley out of the FA Cup on Saturday - becoming the first non-league team to reach the quarter-finals of the competition since 1914.

It is one of the greatest shocks in the history of the famous competition. Here we take a look at other notable shocks down the years:

Sutton 2 Coventry 1

Coventry arrived in Surrey in January 1989, just 18 months after winning the 1987 FA Cup, and were riding high in the top flight. It appeared to be a case of 'no contest' against the non-league team. But they were left stunned as Tony Rains and Matthew Hanlan became the goalscoring heroes for a team fashioned by English teacher Barrie Williams. Both scorers became instant celebrities, appearing on Terry Wogan's chat show the following Monday.

Conference side Sutton stunned Coventry at Gander Green Lane (Getty Images)

Liverpool 0 Wimbledon 1

Dave Beasant became the first goalkeeper to save a penalty - from striker John Aldridge - in an FA Cup final in 1988. That proved to be the turning point in a game which was expected to be no more than a stroll in the park for Liverpool. But Wimbledon, true to form, scrapped and battled for every ball, with Lawrie Sanchez heading the winner following a free-kick from Dennis Wise.

Sunderland 1 Leeds 0

Bob Stokoe's Division Two side stunned mighty Leeds, with Ian Porterfield's first-half goal and Jim Montgomery's second-half save the highlights of the contest in the 1973 final at Wembley.

Sunderland shocked Leeds in front of 100,000 fans at Wembley (Getty Images)

Wigan 1 Manchester City 0

Wigan claimed the first major trophy in their 81-year history when Ben Watson's last-minute goal settled the 2013 final against odds-on favourites Manchester City at Wembley.

Wrexham 2 Arsenal 1

In 1992 the Gunners were the reigning league champions, Wrexham were bottom of the old fourth division - there was only going to be one result at the Racecourse Ground. Arsenal had taken the lead through Alan Smith but, with 10 minutes to go, 37-year-old Mickey Thomas unleashed a 25-yard free-kick past David Seaman for the equaliser. The Welsh side could sense an upset and Steve Watkin popped up late on to score the winner and send their illustrious opponents crashing out.

Wrexham's players celebrate after their historic win (Getty)

Hereford 2 Newcastle 1

The Southern League side had earned a glorious 2-2 draw at St James' Park in February 1972 and were given little chance of emulating that feat in the replay. It was all going to plan when Newcastle took the lead in a game which had been constantly postponed by bad weather. But Hereford grew stronger as the match went on and Ronnie Radford equalised with a 40-yard thunderbolt to take the game into extra time. Then Ricky George hit the winner.

Burnley 0 Wimbledon 1

This game in 1975 marked Wimbledon's arrival as a team capable of causing a shock or two because of their feisty attitude. They had barely started their remarkable journey from the Southern League to the top flight but were already making waves. Micky Mahon stunned the Clarets to grab the winner but the hero was goalkeeper Dickie Guy, who made a string of superb saves.

Shrewsbury 2 Everton 1

Languishing near the bottom of the Football League in early 2003, Shrewsbury turned the form book on its head thanks to two goals from Nigel Jemson. He smashed home a 38th-minute free-kick and then, after substitute Niclas Alexandersson had levelled for the Premier League team on the hour, glanced an 89th-minute header past Richard Wright to seal a famous victory.

Shrewsbury Town players after knocking Everton out of the FA Cup (Getty)

Norwich 0 Luton 1

Luton recalled better days gone by as they went to Carrow Road and beat Norwich in 2013. Substitute Scott Rendell's strike 10 minutes from time earned Luton victory as a non-League side beat top-flight opposition in the FA Cup for the first time in 24 years.

Luton's players at the final whistle following their FA Cup fourth-round victory (Getty)

Chelsea 2 Bradford 4

Gary Cahill and Ramires had the Premier League leaders 2-0 up in 2015 but League One outfit Bradford stunned their hosts with goals from Jon Stead, Filipe Morais, Andy Halliday and Mark Yeates earning them a place in the last 16.

Join our commenting forum

Join thought-provoking conversations, follow other Independent readers and see their replies


Thank you for registering

Please refresh the page or navigate to another page on the site to be automatically logged inPlease refresh your browser to be logged in