A look back on recent classic FA Cup ties

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January 5, 2016 by jaquobcrooke98

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By Jaquob Crooke

Bournemouth are the latest team to encounter Birmingham in the nostalgic Third Round of the Emirates FA Cup, with a sense of revenge lurking in the waters when you recall the Cherries last visit to St Andrews.

But I’m not going to remind you of that e**** nil drubbing back in 2014 but instead turn back the years on past FA Cup fixtures, from last years trip to Blyth Spartans all the way back to that excellent 2-1 win at Goodison Park back in 2010. Hopefully some of these recollections will get you into the FA Cup spirit as Blues aim to overcome Premier League opposition.

Blues 1-2 West Bromich Albion (4th Round)

An atmosphere of excitement and expectation had formulated as a first sell-out crowd since the semi-final play-off tie against Blackpool were present for a local FA Cup clash. The Rowett Revolution was still in its opening transition, results were positive and confidence was high. Despite that Blues found themselves battling against a two goal deficit after 35 minutes, with Robinson failing to cope with the physicality of Nigerian International Victor Anichebe. Blues pulled one back not long after through Jonathan Grounds, and a superb save from former Blues goalkeeper Ben Foster denied a fine individual effort from Demarai Gray salvaging Blues a replay in which was a pulsating second half.

Blyth Spartans 2-3 Blues (3rd Round)

“A bit of an anti-climax” were the words of Blyth Spartans midfielder Stephen Turnbull after the lowest ranked side left in the competition had drew Blues in the FA Cup Third Round. A Wes Thomas brace ensured karma was served for the comments, even though Blues found themselves 2-0 down to opposition that were ranked 120 places below them. However a 6 minute onslaught in the second half spared the blushes of Gary Rowett and his team as they displayed their newly recognised fighting spirit and claimed their spot in the fourth round. 

Blues 1-2 Swansea City (4th Round)

I apologise for reminding you of the defeats but this was a game that got away from Lee Clark’s side. A few months earlier Blues were victorious over Swansea in the League Cup thanks to Dan Burn, Matt Green and Tom Adeyemi, and another cup success over Swansea was on the cards after Lee Novak’s header in the 15th minute. Unfortunately the inability to consolidate this lead, in spite of the number of chances produced, left record signing Wilfried Bony the oppurtunity to punish Blues, for which he done twice. Reece Brown did make a mouth-watering statement on that Saturday afternoon though.

Blues 1-2 Leeds United (3rd Round Replay)

I recall this game not because of the enthralling magic of the game. In all honesty, it was diabolical. But this fixture possessed quite possibly the coldest conditions I have ever experienced down St Andrews. I went skiing the week after and you could argue the Swiss Alps were warmer. Wade Elliot side-footed a Redmond delivery past Jamie Ashdown, but Blues were immediately pegged back. A McCormack equaliser was followed by a Diouf penalty, preventing Blues from hosting a financially exclusive home tie against Tottenham Hotspur. The tie at Elland Road also had talking points. Wade Elliot scored an absolute screamer and Will Packwood, when he was being touted as the new Captain America, broke his leg.

Wolverhampton Wanderers 0-1 Blues (3rd Round Replay)

An extremely memorable night. Blues had just annihilated Millwall 6-0 at the Den, and carried this surging confidence into the game at Molineux. Wolves were also enjoying Premier League status at the time, yet Blues were the more dominant, potent side. Numerous chances fell for the likes of Beausejour, Spector and Rooney, with the common Mutch 25 yard drive unable to beat keeper Dorus De Vries. Down the other end, Colin Doyle was still producing his magical FA Cup antics, a double save from a Stephen Hunt volley and follow up the pick of the lot. Wade Elliot’s late goal ensured Blues’ passage to a fourth round tie at Bramall Lane, and resulted in Wolves being the only Premier League side to be knocked out of the Third Round by Championship opposition. 

Sheffield United 0-4 Blues (4th Round)

I think many would agree that the Chris Hughton FA Cup run in 2012 is one of the favourites in recent years. A voiceferous contingent of 4,000+ had followed Blues up the M1 to see a ruthless and clinical Blues side, despite being on the back foot for the opening quarter of an hour. Jordon Mutch bounced his corner to the edge of the box, Redmond arriving first to the ball before firing it past keeper Simonsen. Chris Burke fed in Adam Rooney for the second 7 minutes before half time, and ignoring a moment of calamitous defending which nearly resulted in a Lowton goal, Blues were comfortable, with Wade Elliot’s deflected goal putting Blues out of sight. Rooney knocked in his second towards the end, as David Murphy beat his man with ease and produced the oppurtunity that Rooney could not miss.

Chelsea 1-1 Blues (5th Round)

Sticking with the 2012 FA Cup run, Blues faced a trip to Stamford Bridge where an under pressure Andre Villas-Boas awaited, with the FA Cup and the Champions League (we all know how that ended up) the only competitions remaining to save their season. However Blues put a spanner in the works and their first half excellence was rewarded with a 1-0 lead thanks to David Murphy slotting in from close range. Colin Doyle, the hero in many cup installments, was on hand to deny a Juan Mata penalty. The Chelsea midfield endured little joy in a spacially deprived midfield battle, however after the interval Chelsea began to dominate posession and chances. Birmingham born Daniel Sturridge restored parity after an hour with a header, but Blues valiantly held on infront of another mass away contingent, a replay at St Andrews the prize.

Blues 0-2 Chelsea (5th Round Replay)

Perhaps if the fixture wasn’t Roberto Di Matteo’s first game in charge, the outcome may have been a little different. Chelsea were a resurgent, classy figure as they began life without Andre Villas-Boas, and yet another Colin Doyle penalty shut-out wasn’t enough as Chelsea strolled through the gears and exerted their authority on a fatigued Blues side. Despite player conditios, Chris Hughton’s men battled on and excluding the result of the tie, the evening was certainly an enjoyable one from a Blues perspective, amongst what is now deemed a unique sell out crowd.

Blues 2-3 Bolton Wanderers (Quarter-Final)

The inability to ensure a second trip to Wembley in the space of a few months was very much ‘Typical Blues’. A dramatic clash saw Alex McLeish’s defeated by a injury time winner from Lee Chung-Yong, even after battling back twice with equalisers from both Cameron Jerome and a superb dipping finish from Kevin Phillips. Stuart Parnaby was also in at right-back that afternoon.

Everton 1-2 Blues (4th Round)

 
One of the four Christian Benitez goals had left its mark on this FA Cup match at Goodison Park as Blues extended their unbeaten record to 15 matches. 33 minutes after Chucho’s opener, Barry Ferguson’s clincal finish following an exquisite flowing move gave Everton a mountain to climb, and despite a second half onslaught from the Toffees, the renowned battling spirit shone through as Blues secured a place into the 5th round.

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