Ah the magic of the FA Cup Thrid Round, the stage of the competition when all the big guns come in and the minnows dream of the near-patented ‘FA Cup magic’ sprinkling them with fairy dust and they topple Premier League opposition on their opponent’s own turf.
To be fair, it rarely happens that a National League North side goes to Old Trafford and come away victorious and beaming from ear-to-ear. However, there are always those times when ‘Billy-Big-Boots’ teams ring the changes and come a cropper. It nearly happened to Liverpool on Friday night at League Two Exeter City before the Reds dipped deep and conjured an equaliser after going behind to a goal direct from a corner. Then today, Sunday, League Two side Oxford United knocked out Premier League strugglers Swansea City with the impressive Kemar Roofe scoring a brace.
However, it’s not always about the football, the scoring, the defeating higher-level opposition. No, sometimes it’s about the other things that act as almost a sideline to the ‘beautiful game’.
Here’s a look at some of the lighter side of the FA Cup Third Round.
The case of the cat and the keeper
Evading Everton keeper Jean Robles, this plucky feline then went on to stare out the Dagenham and Redbridge fans whilst the game continued in the background.
A late penalty not enough to beat a snore draw
Whilst Manchester United are hardly setting light to games with scintillating performances in the Premier League, surely the wonder, passion and vigour of the FA Cup would be enough to keep fans on the edge of their seats…you’d think.
Inches away from ‘lad’ status
Pitch invasions usually involve some form of nudity as a predominantly ‘beered-up’ individual, usually male, hoicks it over the advertising hoardings and weaves majestically across the turf – powered more by alcohol than nimble footwork. It certainly almost did for the Jeremy Corbyn lookalike at the Ten Acres Stadium as the red-hooded invader trotted down the pitch and into the box, only failing to make contact by a matter of timing and a slip on the muddy turf. Wearing a grey top bearing the legend ‘Saiorse, UNICEF, Adidas’ – it’s hearsay that he is to be offered a contract.
The name’s Chaplow, not Tom as Stoke fans serenade Doncaster’s ‘Thumbelina’
Your team have been beaten in the FA Cup by Premier League opposition after a hard-fought 2-1 loss. You’ve given everything, you are on the train on the way home and simply trying to relax. Suddenly opposition fans spot you, notice that you are follically challenged and then launch into a Renee and Renate-style serenade. It’s worse if you are that person sat there that the good-natured banter is aimed at – much worse if you are one of the opposing team’s players.