Women’s FA Cup: The Giant-Killers

With only six places in the FA Cup fifth round available to the 244 entrants from outside WPL1, there are limited opportunities for cup upsets in the latter stages, so we’re taking a look at the giant-killings that have already happened in this year’s competition.

Up to and including the fourth round there have been 35 games where a lower division team has beaten a higher one. But which teams have been the biggest giant killers so far? Using a simple points-scoring system, where 1 point is awarded for beating a team one division higher and two points for two divisions higher we get five teams tied on three points. These are (in alphabetical order) Gornal, Hemel Hempstead Town, Leek Town, Sheffield Wednesday and Southampton Women. We have ranked these clubs by taking into account the margin of victory over the bigger teams, weighted by the number of divisions difference.

The biggest giant-killers of 2016/17

Just to ramp up the tension, the top five are listed here in reverse order…

5. Gornal

Birmingham County League side Gornal knocked out two West Midlands Regional League teams during the qualifying rounds. The first was Crusaders of the Premier Division, who were eliminated on penalties after Gornal put in an impressive show to draw 2-2 against a side two divisions higher than themselves. This was followed up with a 2-1 victory over Stourbridge of the Southern Division, but Gornal’s cup run came to an end in the fourth qualifying round when they suffered a heavy defeat to Radcliffe Olympic of the WPL.

4. Hemel Hempstead Town

Hemel Hempstead, who currently play in the Premier Division of the Greater London League, are the only team so far to have beaten three higher-level sides on their impressive run to the first round proper. A 2-1 win against Bedford of the Eastern Region Premier Division in the second qualifying round was followed by two 2-0 victories over Herne Bay (London & South East Region) and AFC Dunstable (Eastern Region). Like Gornal the run was ended by WPL opposition when they were beaten 3-1 by Milton Keynes Dons.

3. Leek Town

The Staffordshire side, who are members of the West Midlands Regional League, Northern Division, managed to beat WPL opposition during their run to the fourth qualifying round. Their 3-1 win at Midlands Division One strugglers Loughborough Students had been preceded by a 2-1 away win against Knowle of the West Midlands Region Premier Division.

Their progress in the tournament was eventually halted by Leicester City Women’s development team, who are now challenging for the league title in the East Midlands Regional League, Division One South.

2. Southampton Women

Southampton eased their way into the competition with an easy 5-1 victory over Fleet Town of Southern Region League Division One. A trip to the Isle of Wight followed in the fourth qualifying round, where they beat the WPL’s Shanklin 3-0, and next up they earned an even bigger scalp in Swindon Town of the WPL’s Southern Division, who were sent back to Wiltshire with a 2-0 defeat.

Southampton’s third consecutive tie against WPL opposition proved too much however, they lost 4-0 to Cambridge United in the second round.

1. Sheffield Wednesday

After kicking off their tournament, like Southampton, with a comfortable win over lower-ranked opposition (in their case 4-0 over Brighouse Athletic), Wednesday pulled off possibly the biggest shock of the third qualifying round by taking a 4-1 victory from a Sheffield derby against Steel City Wanderers. Wanderers play their league football in WPL Midlands Division One, two division higher than the Owls, so to put four goals past them was a tremendous result.

Wednesday pulled of another upset in the next round, although this time of slightly smaller proportions, when they beat Wallsend Boys Club 2-1 to reach the first round proper. Like Gornal, Wednesday’s cup run was ended by Radcliffe Olympic.

The three-goal winning margin over a team two divisions higher than themselves earns Sheffield Wednesday the title of womensfooty.uk FA Cup Queens of the Giant-Killing!

The upsets

All 35 upsets so far in this season’s FA Cup are listed here. Congratulations to everyone who managed to get on this list!

Accrington (North West Regional League, Premier Division)

  • 3Q: won 3-0 v Tranmere Rovers (WPL Northern Division One)

Ascot United (Southern Region League, Division One)

  • 2Q: won 3-2 v Milton Keynes City (Southern Region League, Premier Division)

Boldmere St Michaels (Birmingham County League)

  • 2Q: won 3-2 (aet) v Rubery (West Midlands Regional League, Southern Division)

Cambridge United (WPL South East Division One)

  • 1R: won 3-1 v Queens Park Rangers (WPL Southern Division)

Coventry Development (West Midlands Regional League, Southern Division)

  • 3Q: penalty shoot-out win over Arnold Town (East Midlands Regional League, Premier Division)

Coventry United (WPL Southern Division)

  • R3: won 2-0 v Oxford United (WSL2)

Farsley Celtic (North East Regional League, Southern Division)

  • 2Q: won 7-0 v Wakefield (North East Regional League, Premier Division)

FC United of Manchester (North West Regional League, Southern Division)

  • 2Q: won 2-1 v Bolton Wanderers (North West Regional League, Premier Division)

Fleet Town (Southern Region League, Division One)

  • 2Q: won 6-0 v Team Solent (Southern Region League, Premier Division)

Gornal (Birmingham County League)

  • 2Q: penalty shoot-out win over Crusaders (West Midlands Regional League, Premier Division)
  • 3Q: won 2-1 v Stourbridge (West Midlands Regional League, Southern Division)

Hartlepool United (North East Regional League, Northern Division)

  • 4Q: won 7-1 v Accrington Girls & Ladies (North West Regional League, Premier Division)

Hemel Hempstead Town (Greater London League, Premier Division)

  • 2Q: won 2-1 v Bedford (Eastern Region League, Premier Division)
  • 3Q: won 2-0 v Herne Bay (London & South East Regional League)
  • 4Q: won 2-0 v AFC Dunstable (Eastern Region League, Premier Division)

Ilminster Town (South West League, Eastern Division)

  • 2Q: penalty shoot-out win over Middlezoy Rovers (South West League, Premier Division)

Keynsham Town (WPL South West Division One)

  • R2: won 3-1 v C&K Basildon (WPL Southern Division)

Leek Town (West Midlands Regional League, Northern Division)

  • 2Q: won 2-1 v Knowle (West Midlands Regional League, Premier Division)
  • 3Q: won 3-1 v Loughborough Students (WPL Midlands Division One)

Leicester City WFC Development (East Midlands Regional League, Southern Division)

  • 3Q: won 6-2 v Bedworth United (East Midlands Regional League, Premier Division)

Liverpool Marshall Feds (WPL Northern Division One)

  • 1R: beat Stoke City (WPL Northern Division) 4-2 on penalties
  • 2R: won 1-0 v Newcastle United (WPL Northern Division)

Market Warsop (Nottinghamshire County League)

  • 2Q: won 5-1 v AFC Leicester (East Midlands Regional League, Southern Division)

Merseyrail Bootle (North West Regional League, Southern Division)

  • 2Q: won 4-1 v City of Manchester (North West Regional League, Premier Division)

Penrith (North West Regional League, Northern Division)

  • 3Q: won 4-2 v Boldon CA (North East Regional League, Premier Division)

Queens Park Rangers Development (Greater London League, Premier Division)

  • 3Q: won 3-0 v Fulham Foundation (London & South East Regional League)

RACA Tynedale (North East Regional League, Premier Division)

  • 4Q: won 2-1 v Crewe Alexandra (WPL Northern Division One)

Regents Park Rangers (Greater London League, Premier Division)

  • 3Q: won 3-2 v Royston Town (Eastern Region League, Premier Division)
  • 4Q: won 4-2 v Chesham United (Southern Region League, Premier Division)

Sheffield United (East Midlands Regional League, Premier Division)

  • 3Q: won 1-0 v Chester-le-Street Town (WPL Northern Division One)

Sheffield Wednesday (North East Regional League, Southern Division)

  • 3Q: won 4-1 v Steel City Wanderers (WPL Midlands Division One)
  • 4Q: won 2-1 v Wallsend Boys Club (North East Regional League, Premier Division)

Southampton Women (Southern Region League, Premier Division)

  • 4Q: won 3-0 v Shanklin (WPL South West Division One)
  • 1R: won 2-0 v Swindon Town (WPL Southern Division)

Tottenham Hotspur (WPL Southern Division)

  • 4R: won 1-0 v Brighton & Hove Albion (WSL2)
Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s