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Rediff News  All News  » Sports » Charlton knocked out of FA Cup

Charlton knocked out of FA Cup

January 04, 2004 16:53 IST

The FA Cup lived up to its reputation for shocks on Saturday when Charlton Athletic, fourth in the English Premier League, were beaten 3-2 by first division Gillingham in the third round.

One of the most eagerly-awaited days of the English season also featured another giant-killing performance for minor league Telford United, who claimed their 13th Football League scalp by beating first division Crewe Alexandra 1-0 away.

All three surviving non-league clubs will at least appear in Monday's fourth-round draw as Accrington Stanley drew 0-0 at home with second division Colchester and Scarborough drew 1-1 at third division Southend.

Elsewhere, big-spending Chelsea twice had to come from behind to draw 2-2 on a muddy pitch at first division Watford -- who opened the scoring with a goal that clearly did not cross the line -- while the Premier League's bottom club Wolverhampton Wanderers needed an 89th-minute equaliser to force a 1-1 draw at third division neighbours Kidderminster Harriers.

Charlton, pushing for a place in Europe, were ahead in the first minute with an Ian Cox own goal but found themselves trailing 3-1 at the break after goals by Tommy Johnson, Mamady Sidibe and Paul Smith -- the third a 25-yard screamer.


Gillingham, 15th in the first division, fully deserved their win but had to survive a late barrage during which Carlton Cole pulled one back for the London side.

Wolves also seemed on the way out as Kidderminster, a non-league club until 2000 and managed by former Liverpool and Denmark international Jan Molby, went ahead through veteran substitute John Williams after 77 minutes, only for Alex Rae to level at the death.

"We raised our game today and we are very unlucky not to be through," said Molby, who played in four finals for Liverpool.

Conference side Telford took the honours at Crewe where the only goal came after two minutes when much-travelled striker Lee Mills headed home Fitzroy Simpson's cross.

"I feel fantastic, it was a good performance because Crewe are a good side," Telford manager Mick Jones told Sky Sports TV.

"For us to come here and win is a quite remarkable performance. We've had a roller coaster roll in the FA Cup and it hasn't stopped yet."

In three all-premier league clashes Birmingham City thumped Blackburn Rovers 4-0 -- exacting revenge for a league defeat by the same score a month ago -- Manchester City drew 2-2 with Leicester City and Newcastle United won 3-0 at last season's runners-up Southampton.

Kieron Dyer scored twice and Laurent Robert once as Newcastle recorded their first away victory over the south coast club since 1972.

Tottenham Hotspur, languishing in the Premier League's bottom three after four successive defeats, finally had something to celebrate as they thumped London rivals Crystal Palace 3-0 with a Freddie Kanoute hat-trick.

First division leaders Norwich City performed well but went down 3-1 at Everton, Duncan Ferguson weighing in with two penalties for the five-times winners.

Bolton Wanderers manager Sam Allardyce rested many of his usual first-choice players and the stand-ins were held to a 1-1 draw at second division Tranmere Rovers.

There are four more games on Sunday -- Cup holders Arsenal visit Leeds United, Aston Villa host Manchester United, Fulham play Chesterfield while Liverpool visit famous Cup fighters Yeovil.

Mitch Phillips
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