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Friday, 10 December, 1999, 23:05 GMT
Palace fall as Forest held

Dougie Freedman gave Forest a cup lead but Oxford equalised

Click here for details of Aston Villa v Darlington and the changes to this year's competition

Click here for other Premiership clubs' Saturday team news

FA Cup third round weekend began on Friday with poor results for two former Premiership clubs at the hands of Oxford and Cambridge.

The second division teams from England's ancient university cities shocked Nottingham Forest and Crystal Palace, side who have yo-yoed between the top two divisions throughout the decade.

Forest have a replay chance to put it right after drawing 1-1 with Oxford at the City Ground, but Palace - 1990 finalists and 1995 semi-finalists - are out of this year's competition after defeat at Cambridge.

Cambridge Utd 2-0 Crystal Palace

Palace became the first major victims of FA Cup third round weekend, as Cambridge increased the misery for the debt-ridden former Premiership club.

Palace are 16th in first division, mid-table despite their massive financial problems, while Cambridge lie 23rd in the second, with three wins from 20 league games.

Crystal Palace boss Steve Coppell is the first to suffer a third round upset
But league position counted for nothing at the Abbey Stadium.

Trevor Benjamin scored the opening goal on 74 minutes, outpacing the Palace defence to head in from keeper Shaun Marshall's long punt forward.

Skipper Paul Wanless sealed the win for the second division strugglers seven minutes later, heading in a John Taylor cross.

Palace's misery was complete when defender Hayden Mullins was sent off for a second yellow card five minutes from time.

Palace had just one shot on target, while Chinese international Fan Zhiyi missed a golden opportunity to level the scores when United were just one up.

Nottingham Forest 1-1 Oxford United

These two teams will meet again at the Manor Ground on 21 December after Oxford substitute Paul Powell equalised a quarter of an hour from the end of this tie.

Dougie Freedman opened the scoring for Forest 11 minutes before half time.

The Nottingham club have lost six of their last seven league games.

And Oxford almost clinched victory through another sub, Jamie Cook, when he crashed his late shot against the Forest post with goalkeeper Dave Beasant beaten.

Davids and Goliaths on Wembley trail

Third round weekend gets underway in earnest on Saturday, three weeks earlier than the traditional early January date.

But despite the change, the weekend is sure to produce some memorable football.

Twenty-three Saturday games see 13 members of the Premiership start their cup campaigns.

Hereford's Ronnie Radford is arguably the most famous single giant-killer of all time
All will be trying to make sure they are not on the back pages of the Sunday papers suffering the embarrassment of a cup shock.

A Hereford victory over Leicester would be the biggest single shock, and few football fans need telling that they have done it before.

Newcastle were beaten in 1972 thanks to a man called Ronnie Radford who is always in demand for interviews come third round day.

Sunday sees the only all-top-flight clash of the round between Spurs and Newcastle, with one or the other knowing that their only realistic chance of silverware will be gone by Christmas.

There is also the prospect of Liverpool travelling to first division leaders Huddersfield, while Rushden and Diamonds fly the non-league flag.

Finally Monday night sees Arsenal and Southampton join the party, the 18th and 19th Premiership clubs to play an FA Cup match this season.

Of course there will be no 20th, with Manchester United's players resting up after a busy few weeks.

Schedule and results

Friday 10 December
ko 1945GMT

  • Nottingham Forest 1-1 Oxford United
  • Cambridge United 2-0 Crystal Palace
Saturday 11 December
ko 1500GMT

  • Reading v Plymouth
  • Norwich City v Coventry City
  • Wigan v Wolverhampton
  • West Brom v Blackburn
  • Charlton Athletic v Swindon Town
  • Hull v Chelsea
  • Walsall v Gillingham
  • Sheffield Wednesday v Bristol City
  • Tranmere Rovers v West Ham United
  • Watford v Birmingham City
  • Queens Park Rangers v Torquay United
  • Wimbledon v Barnsley
  • Preston North End v Oldham Athletic
  • Crewe Alexandra v Bradford City
  • Exeter City v Everton
  • Sunderland v Portsmouth
  • Grimsby Town v Stockport County
  • Fulham v Luton Town
  • Wrexham v Middlesbrough
  • Hereford United v Leicester City
  • Derby County v Burnley
  • Bolton Wanderers v Cardiff City
  • Aston Villa v Darlington
Sunday 12 December

  • Chester City v Man City (1300GMT)
  • Sheff Utd v Rushden & Diamonds (1300)
  • Huddersfield v Liverpool (1400)
  • Leeds Utd v Port Vale (1500)
  • Tottenham v Newcastle (1600)
Monday 13 December

  • Arsenal v Blackpool (1945GMT)
  • Ipswich v Southampton (2000GMT)

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See also:
10 Dec 99 |  Football
Blow for England's Euro hopes
10 Dec 99 |  FA Cup
A very peculiar FA Cup
10 Dec 99 |  FA Cup
Bulls thankful for cup cash
08 Nov 99 |  Football
FA Cup to have 'wild card' entry
21 Nov 99 |  FA Cup
Spurs handed revenge chance
28 Oct 99 |  UK
Man Utd confirm exit from FA Cup
Links to other FA Cup stories are at the foot of the page.