February 17, 2016

2015-16 FA Cup, Fifth Round Proper: location-map, with current average attendances & fixtures list (16 clubs)/ + illustrated article: in February 1972, the greatest FA Cup upset ever: 5 February 1972 FA Cup 3rd Round replay, Hereford Utd 2-1 Newcastle Utd (aet).

Filed under: 2015-16 FA Cup — admin @ 11:02 pm
2015-16 FA Cup, Fifth Round Proper: location-map, with current average attendances & fixtures list (16 clubs)

By Bill Turianski on 17 February 2016;
-Preview…FA Cup fifth round: 10 things to look out for this weekend…(
-The competition…2015-16 FA Cup (
-5th Round fixtures… 2015-16 FA CUP 5TH ROUND (
-BBC’s FA Cup page…FA Cup (

    Breaking news [~15 Feb. 2016]…Under pressure from the Premier League, the FA considers scrapping all FA Cup replays…

-From, from 15 Feb.2016, by Ben Rumsby, FA Cup could become midweek competition with no replays (

-From, from 16 Feb.2016, by Saj Chowdhury… FA Cup replays: Relive some of the competition’s best ever (article with several highlight videos, at As commenter Zee Zee Top says (in the comments section in the BBC article linked to above)…’ “The FA are in talks with the Premier League”. In that sentence you can see all that is wrong with English football. Why should the Premier League have the power on the level of the FA? As with every thing else in the country the richest get sway and power over everything else – the sooner Scudamore and his pack of Sky thieves can be kicked out of football the better. Beyond a joke now.’…(comment by Zee Zee Top on 16 Feb. 2016 at

Scrapping FA Cup replays would be a shame and a disservice to all the small, lower-League, and non-League clubs in English football…
FA Cup replays are a vital source of revenue for lower-League and non-League clubs. As John Ashdown says in the Guardian/football article linked to at the top of this post, ‘Smaller clubs handed away draws at the big boys need the carrot of a replay. So suck it up, Premier League. Replays need to stay.’

Arguably the greatest FA Cup upset ever was in a replay match, and that was the match between Hereford United and Newcastle United, which took place in February of 1972. It was a thrice-postponed replay of a 3rd round fixture, won in epic fashion by the now-defunct-and-back-then-non-League Hereford United. That match, for all intents and purposes, effectively propelled Hereford United into the Football League the following season.

    44 years ago this month, was the greatest FA Cup upset ever: Hereford Utd 2-1 Newcastle Utd (aet)

-Video highlights [Hereford Utd 2-1 Newcastle Utd (aet), third round FA Cup replay in 1972] (3:01 video at

-Best FA Cup tie ever (2007 Observer Sport/E.ON poll)…winner: Hereford Utd 2-1 Newcastle Utd [1971-72 FA Cup 3rd Round replay from 5 Feb. 1972]. Article, with recollections of players and other participants, as told to Jamie Jackson…It’ll Never Happen (The Observer via

The now-defunct Hereford United FC existed from 1924 to 2014, and spent 31 seasons in the Football League (last in 2011-12). The club reached the second tier (the old Second Division) in 1976-77, its best league position. (A Phoenix club now exists, the 9th level/Midland Football League club Hereford FC.) Hereford United were a semi-pro team back then in the early 1970s, and, back in the days before there was any automatic promotion-&-relegation between the Football League and non-League football [ie, pre-1986-87], Hereford United were a long-time member of the Southern League. Meanwhile, Newcastle United were, of course, a long-established top flight club (NUFC finished in 11th place in the First Division in 1971-72).

As a non-League team, Hereford entered the 1971-72 FA Cup competition in the 4th qualifying round, beating local rivals Cheltenham Town. Then Hereford beat another non-League side, King’s Lynn, in the 1st round in November 1971 (in a replay, by the score of 1-0, in front of 7 thousand in Hereford). Then Hereford beat 4th Division side Northampton Town in the 2nd round in December 1971 (by the score of 2-1, in Hereford, in front of 8 thousand).

Then Hereford drew a 3rd round match-up with Newcastle United for the 3rd round in early January 1972. Five thousand Hereford supporters made the 330 km (or 207 mile) trip up north to St James Park in Newcastle-upon-Tyne, and the Bulls shocked the talent-laden Newcastle squad (which featured 6 internationals), playing them to a 2-2 draw before a crowd of 39,301 (which was near-temporary-capacity, as Newcastle were rebuilding part of their ground at the time).

The replay was set for Hereford’s Edgar Street ground, but then there were 3 postponements due to a waterlogged pitch. So when the rescheduled match was finally played in early February 1972, it was being played at the same time as the 4th round proper, and it was to be played on a chewed up and very muddy pitch. It was quagmire, to put it plainly, one which could really only benefit the underdogs.

It was a nationally-broadcast match on BBC. An overflow-capacity crowd of 14,313 was on hand, but that official attendance figure is rather low, because Hereford had printed up extra tickets, plus there were extra fans perched on trees that overlooked the ground, as well as there being many fans precariously placed on the floodlight pylons (which you can see in a photo below). The real crowd there that day was estimated to be over 16,000. In the screenshots below you can see just how packed-in the crowd was.

Newcastle were on the attack from the start, but Hereford GK Fred Potter made several key saves, with the red-clad Newcastle hitting the woodwork a couple times as well. Hereford also hit the post, early on in the 2nd half. There was no scoring until very late in the match, when the Newcastle and England FW Malcolm ‘Supermac’ Macdonald headed in a deep cross from MF Viv Busby (in the 82nd minute/see 1st fuzzy screenshot below). It was Macdonald’s 23rd goal of the season (he scored 32 goals in all competitions in 1972-72). That was when 31-year-old Hereford player/manager Colin Addison made a substitution, replacing Hereford-born DF Roger Griffiths with MF Ricky George. Griffiths had suffered a broken leg earlier in the game but had played on (!). That player-substitution would prove to be crucial. Three minutes after Newcastle had taken the lead, Hereford equalized with a 30-yard wonder-strike by part-time carpenter Ronnie Radford, in the 85th minute (see 2nd fuzzy screenshot below). Radford’s thunderous goal came off a neat give-and-go with FW Brian Owen. An in-game pitch invasion ensued (see 3rd fuzzy screenshot below). Delirious joy in Heredfordshire. When that pitch invasion was finally sorted, the match resumed, and a little bit later regulation time ended at 1-1, so the 30-minute added-extra-time was to be played. In the 23rd minute of aet (103′), Ronnie Radford found MF Dudley Tyler on the right, who passed it into the box to that late substitution, Ricky George, who found some space, turned and shot a daisy-cutter which slid into the net just inside the far post (see 4th fuzzy screenshot below). There then was another bonkers pitch invasion by the giddy Hereford faithful. The Bulls held off Newcastle for the rest of added extra time, and a giant-killing of legendary proportions had just occurred. And then, of course, a third pitch invasion ensued (see photos and 5th fuzzy screenshot further below).

Four days later, on 9 Feb. 1972, Hereford, having drawn West Ham United in the 4th round, played that First Division team to a 0-0 standstill at Edgar Street in front of another overflow-capacity crowd (estimated at ~15,000). But five days after that, on 14 Feb. 1972, Hereford’s fairy-tale 71/72 Cup-run ended in a 2-1 loss to the Hammers in front of 42 thousand at the Boleyn Ground in East London.

Three months later, Hereford United finished in second place in the 1971-72 Southern League, 2 points behind Chelmsford City. And, finally, in the summer of 1972, five months after their historic Cup-upset-win over Newcastle, Hereford United were elected to the Football League Fourth Division, for the 1972-73 season.

-From, from Jan.2015, by Leo Moynihan, Hereford vs Newcastle: Ronnie, Motty, Supermac & Co. on the FA Cup’s greatest-ever upset

    The greatest FA Cup upset ever: 5 February 1972 FA Cup 3rd Round replay, Hereford Utd 2-1 Newcastle Utd (aet)

Photo credits above – Newcastle Utd and Hereford Utd early 1970s jersey badges from & Screenshot of ESPN re-broadcast of BBC game-video uploaded by Gr8Footy at 05/02/72 Hereford United v Newcastle United ( 3 screenshots of BBC game-video uploaded by Simon Bonelle at Hereford Utd v Newcastle Utd 5 Feb 1972 (Hereford Utd Goals) ( In-game-time pitch invasion by Hereford fans after the Radford goal, photo by Popperfoto/Getty Images via Post-game pitch invasion, photo from Popperfoto/Getty Images/Bentley Archive via Memory Lane: the FA Cup third round – in pictures ( Hereford Utd home kit illustration and early 1970s Hereford Utd crest, illustrations by Historical Football Kits site at Ronnie Radford, Ricky George, and teammates celebrate afterwards in the dressing room, photo unattributed at
Thanks to all at the links below…
-Contributors at 2015-16 FA Cup (
-Blank map of UK historic counties, by Nilfanion (using UK Ordnance Survey data), at File:United Kingdom police areas map.svg.
-Blank relief map of Greater London, by Nilfanion (using UK Ordnance Survey data), at File:Greater London UK relief location map.jpg.
-Blank relief map of Greater Manchester, by Nilfanion (using Ordnance Survey data), at File:Greater Manchester UK relief location map.jpg.
-Blank relief map of West Midlands, by Nilfanion, at File:West Midlands UK relief location map.jpg

-Current average attendance figures from
-Stadium capacities, from List of football stadiums in England [listed by capacity] (

-Thanks to the contributors at Hereford United 2–1 Newcastle United (

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