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Page last updated at 13:00 GMT, Saturday, 2 January 2010

Saturday football as it happened



To get involved use 606 or text us your views & comments on 81111 (UK) or +44 7786200666 (worldwide). (Not all contributions can be used)

By Jonathan Stevenson

1930: That's that then. A day that promised much largely flattered to deceive, horribly out of tune with the rest of this magnificent season. Surely we'll have better luck tomorrow, when Man Utd play Leeds, Chelsea host Watford and West Ham entertain Arsenal, among others. Have a fun night, and see you in a few hours.

From The kid from Fuenlabrada on 606: "One of the most dire performances that I can remember from a dire season. The line-up just reflects Benitez's cluelessness. Rafa picks favourites and plays them again and again regardless of performance."

1923: The fourth round draw, I'm led to believe, is due to take place at about 1815 GMT on Sunday. Don't quote me on that, though, because I'd hate you to base your entire day around it only for me to have got it wrong.

From wonderboi711 on Twitter: "Rafa is truly struggling to motivate our players. It's ridiculous."

1917: FA Cup third round replay dates are Tuesday 12 and Wednesday 13 January, by the way.

From Vinay (Bombay), via text on +44 7786200666: "After the Villa game it looked as if Liverpool were getting back to last year's form. However, seems they haven't broken the shackles yet. Torres being forced into the right wing is becoming a familiar and depressing sight."

BBC Radio 5 live
BBC Radio 5 live's Matt Holland: "They are getting a phenomenal ovation from the home crowd and they really deserved it because they were fantastic today, Reading. They deservedly took the lead and look more likely to win it after the break too."

Full time
1909: Full-time Reading 1-1 Liverpool
You won't find many people disagreeing that Reading deserve that replay - and if you do, tell them they're wrong. Really good first half, not quite such a good second half, and if any team deserves to win it, it was the Royals.

1906: You'd put your house on him to score there. Yossi Benayoun crosses from the left, an inswinger, Fernando Torres beat keeper Ben Hamer to the ball but, on the stretch, the Spaniard can only glance it on to the roof of the net.

1904: Into injury time at the Madejski now, and we're due about four minutes of the stuff. Matthew Mills is booked for going straight through Fernando Torres.

1901: Three minutes left in Berkshire. Still Reading 1-1 Liverpool, and still the hosts doing most of the pressing.

Swindon boss Danny Wilson on Fulham striker Bobby Zamora: "Absolutely [he can make England's World Cup squad]. I hadn't seen Bobby play this year live before today. I saw him play last year and he is a different player this year. He can go however high he wants to irrespective of whether he plays for one of the big clubs or not."

1857: It's difficult to disagree with Robsoninho today. Just imagine how many goals Fernando Torres could score if he played in an attacking team?

From Robsoninho on 606: "Torres is having to play this game more or less on his own. He's received no service whatsoever and has been forced out to the right wing in order to get the ball, you can see his frustration growing."

1854: Fernando Torres looks like he is clean through, but Ryan Bertrand just gets the faintest of touches on the ball and young Ben Hamer races off his line to thwart the Spaniard. They deserve a replay, Reading.

1853: Yossi Benayoun comes on for Liverpool with a little over 10 minutes left, replacing Fabio Aurelio, who sounds like he should be in Gladiator.

1852: Grzegorz Rasiak is withdrawn by Reading, with Irish striker Shane Long coming on in his place.

1850: Ben Hamer is blocked off a corner by Dirk Kuyt and Alberto Aquilani is perilously close to bundling the ball in from close range. Referee Martin Atkinson gives a free-kick for the foul on Hamer.

1849: Disappointing half, this one. Will we have a winner, or will they be going to Anfield for a replay? About 15 minutes left in Reading 1-1 Liverpool.

Man City boss Roberto Mancini ahead of their Carling Cup semi-final first leg against Man United: "At the moment, what is important is this game and Manchester United. We are not talking about transfers. It's possible, but not now, no. It is important the injured players recover."

From Christian (Pompey fan), via text on 81111: "More FA Cup drama outside Fratton Park. Several hundred Pompey fans protest towards the boardroom singing 'sack the board' and other various chants. Interestingly it's Younes Kaboul who confronts the mob and cools the situation. Never a boring moment for Pompey fans."

1843: Ben Hamer, who was on loan at Brentford last season, comes on for Adam Federici. Big test this for the 22-year-old.

1841: Liverpool send on £20m Italian midfielder Alberto Aquilani for French striker David Ngog. Meanwhile, Reading keeper Adam Federici tumbles to the turf clutching his hamstring.

Blackburn boss Sam Allardyce on El-Hadji Diouf's red card: "I see a lot of those situations that never result in a sending-off. They will justify it by saying it was two-footed but the referee, Howard Webb, is a long way away."

1838: Nice approach play from Reading again and Simon Church plays a lovely cross along the six-yard box - Pepe Reina cannot reach it, but there aren't any Reading players there to stick it in the net.

Portsmouth boss Avram Grant: "Eighty per cent of the questions I have been asked since I came here haven't been about the football. I like to talk about things on the football side, but what can I do?"

1836: Reading have done most of the pressing in the second half, but they are struggling to create chances. Liverpool will always be dangerous on the break - could go either way, this one.

1834: Just over an hour gone at the Madejski Stadium in the last FA Cup third round tie of the day, where it's Reading 1-1 Liverpool.

Peterborough manager Mark Cooper: "We thought Harry Redknapp might rest a few but it wasn't to be. It was a fantastic performance from Tottenham. I was really impressed, they are a really good team. I think they'll finish in the top four."

Wigan boss Roberto Martinez on Charles N'Zogbia: "Charlie is a world-class player. He played fantastically well and made a huge difference. His attitude was very good and his football is something the fans would pay money to watch."

From Paul__Fletcher on Twitter: "Steve Coppell spotted by the home fans, who all rise to their feet in generous tribute to their former boss."

1828: The Reading midfielder Gylfi Sigurdsson fires in a right-foot shot from all of 30 yards that Pepe Reina does well to get across to his left and parry away.

1826: A ricochet falls to one of the world's deadliest strikers on the edge of the Reading penalty area, but Fernando Torres' clean right-foot strike flies a yard or two over the Royals' crossbar.

Crystal Palace boss Neil Warnock: "Me and the players haven't been paid but we will get paid. It's not easy for the chairman because he's put a lot of money in over the years. We've just got to get on with it because there are a lot of worse things happening than just not getting paid for a few days."

1823: Steven Gerrard dummies the ball needlessly in the middle of the pitch and there's a Reading player right behind him. Jamie Carragher mops up at the back, but that's careless from the Reds skipper.

Carlisle manager Greg Abbott: "We were pleased with what we did. We matched a top Premier League side from start to finish. They have been around the top of their division for a while, and we were never outclassed."

Sunderland boss Steve Bruce: "The second goal was the important thing because Barrow played their part - they were spirited and had good individuals and they made a proper Cup tie out of it. I wasn't really anxious but it was a difficult day for everyone. The pitch was difficult and the weather was difficult but it's the FA Cup third round and you just have to deal with it."

1819: Back under way at the Madejski Stadium, where it's Reading 1-1 Liverpool.

From joelano10 on 606: "Bertrand was on loan with us at Norwich for the past couple of seasons. He's a very similar player to Ashley Cole and with the quality he's got it wouldn't surprise me if he is successful as Cole in the future."

1812: If you need your appetite whetting ahead of tomorrow's ties, look no further than Bevo's chat with Leeds striker Robert Snodgrass ahead of their meeting with Manchester United. The visitors fancy their chances, but can they pull off what would be an extraordinary Cupset?

From Paul__Fletcher on Twitter: "The Reds fans now in fine voice and Reading happy to reach the break on level terms. I wonder if this game has turned decisively?"

From George, via text on 81111: "It looks like Chelsea could have a decent replacement for Ashley Cole in Bertrand."

Half time
1803: Half-time Reading 1-1 Liverpool
What a great half of Cup football that was - chances at both ends and both teams really going for it. Let's hope for another 45 minutes of the same.

1803: Steven Gerrard's free-kick from the left finds Fabio Aurelio, but for once his trusty left foot doesn't quite get hold of it and Reading clear.

1800: Reading keep getting caught out in their right-back position - another burst forward from Dirk Kuyt sees Fabio Aurelio in acres of space down the Reds left and his left-foot fizzer screams inches wide of the far post.

1759: Steven Gerrard plays a lovely ball into the Reading box down the right for Fernando Torres and the Spaniard's goalbound flick is parried by the right hand of Adam Federici.

From mem on 606: "The game is far from over. It's a good Cup game, both teams going for it. I'm predicting it to stay tight and Benny to come of the bench and win it for Liverpool, he has a knack of getting them out of sticky situations when he comes off the bench."

1754: Liverpool pile forward again and as Reading fail to clear properly, Steven Gerrard volleys over the crossbar from 25 yards.

Liverpool goal: The Reds, who have looked pretty dangerous going forward, get themselves back on level terms. After a decent spell of possession, Steven Gerrard sends over a cross from outside the area and Dirk Kuyt - who had timed his run brilliantly - steps over the ball and watches as Adam Federici can only help it into the net.

1752: GOAL Reading 1-1 Liverpool

BBC Radio 5 live
BBC Radio 5 live's Matt Holland: "Reading are doing well, particularly left-back Ryan Bertrand, on loan from Chelsea. I think he used to be a winger, but he's got to the byeline and sent over a couple of cracking crosses already."

1748: Lovely build-up play from David Ngog and Dirk Kuyt and the Dutchman's cross is powerfully headed just wide from 12 yards by Fernando Torres.

1746: If Liverpool lose, does Rafa Benitez get the bullet? There is a precedent - Simon Church scored his first goal for Wales against Scotland in November, and a few days later Scots boss George Burley got the boot.

From Paul__Fletcher on Twitter: "Fair play to Reading, they've lifted the crowd, asked questions of Liverpool and now scored. Sacked in the morning, chant the crowd to Rafa."

1741: Maybe "hits Simon Church" is a bit harsh. I mean he didn't have time to move much, but he did adjust his feet enough for the ball to go in. And that's pretty much all any decent striker has to do.

Reading goal: The day isn't dead quite yet. The Madejski erupts as Ryan Bertrand swings over a free-kick from the Reading right, Grzegorz Rasiak does brilliantly to keep it in at the far post and it hits Simon Church two yards out and flies into the Liverpool net.

1739: GOAL Reading 1-0 Liverpool

1738: Fabulous stuff from Reading as Ryan Bertrand ghosts past two defenders down their left and sends over a stunning cross that the Reds half-clear, before Gylfi Sigurdsson goes down easily in the Liverpool box and boss Martin Atkinson waves away their half-appeals.

1737: Dirk Kuyt's ball from the right is intended for Fernando Torres, but it reaches David Ngog 16 yards out towards the left of the area and his well-struck shot flies a couple of yards past the far post.

From Dan, Surrey, via text on 81111: "Haha. There was a girl mascot for Reading and a boy for Liverpool. Shook hands with everyone normally, but when it came to each other, they looked at each other as though to say "eww, its a boy/girl", and just missed it out altogether. Ahhh, the magic of the Cup."

1733: Reading keeper Adam Federici races from his line to try and get to the ball ahead of a Liverpool player, but he slides out of his area and handles. He's lucky twice, because he isn't booked and then Steven Gerrard spanks the free-kick into the wall.

1732: The plot thickens. Burnley boss Owen Coyle - heavily linked with the vacant Bolton job - did not appear for their post-match news conference after the 2-1 win at MK Dons. Burnley officials insisted that Coyle had to leave to catch a scheduled flight at Luton airport to see his family in Scotland. Hmm.

1730: Reading have the ball in the net but it's disallowed for a combination of offside and a foul on Liverpool keeper Pepe Reina. Lovely cross from Gylfi Sigurdsson from the free-kick, mind.

From NIreland1-0England on 606: "I like what Liverpool have done, only good players get a shirt with a single digit number on the back. The rest get double digits."

1727: Half-chance for Reading as Jobi McAnuff sends over a cross from the right and Gylfi Sigurdsson hits it first time, his slightly miscued volley flying into the floor and into the arms of Pepe Reina.

1726: Full-time Stoke 3-1 York

1722: David Ngog's cross from the right falls to Fabio Aurelio just inside the Reading area on the left-hand side, and his first-time volley flies wide of Adam Federici's far post.

1721: David Ngog fastens on to a cracking Steven Gerrard pass over the top and the Frenchman's shot appears to deflect behind off Ryan Bertrand, but referee Martin Atkinson gives a goalkick.

1720: About five minutes to go in the only other FA Cup third round game still going on, and it remains Stoke 3-1 York in the delayed kick-off.

From henrywinter on Twitter: "Damp squib day in the FA Cup. Now down to Reading (v Liverpool) and Leeds (v Man United) for some fireworks. Don't hold your breath..."

1717: With seconds on the clock, Brazilian Lucas gets a high - and accidental - boot in the face from Grzegorz Rasiak. He's OK, though.

1716: It's the first time these two teams have ever met in the FA Cup, and they are under way at the Madejski Stadium. It's not too late for this Cupset-shy day to redeem itself. In the pre-match huddle stakes, it's Reading 1-0 Liverpool.

1713: The teams are out in Berkshire and we'll be getting under way very shortly as Reading entertain Liverpool.

From Bijan, Arsenal fan, via text: "Iran's Mehrzad Madanchi has just scored the first international goal of the new decade against North Korea."

BBC Sport's Phil McNulty at the City Ground: "Honours even at the City Ground and encouragement for both managers to take from this FA Cup third round tie. Forest showed exactly why they have become such a threat in the Championship this season, playing in a composed passing style, and for Birmingham Joe Hart was outstanding. Still time for this fine young keeper to press his England claims before the World Cup."

BBC Sport's Paul Fletcher at the Madejski Stadium: "Reading opt for a 4-4-2 formation for their FA Cup tie with Liverpool, with caretaker-manager Brian McDermott opting to select Simon Church alongside Gregorz Rasiak, who replaces Shane Long, up front. Defender Alex Pearce is dropped for Matt Mills, while Jem Karacan comes in for the injured Marek Matejovsky. Liverpool boss Rafael Benitez makes four changes from the team that defeated Aston Villa, with Alberto Aquilani, Yossi Benayoun, Daniel Agger and Glen Johnson making way for Fabio Aurelio, David Ngog, Stephen Darby and Martin Skrtel."

1703: Reading v Liverpool line-ups:
Federici, Gunnarsson, Mills, Ingimarsson, Bertrand, McAnuff, Cisse, Karacan, Sigurdsson, Church, Rasiak.
Subs: Hamer, Tabb, Long, Kebe, Robson-Kanu, Pearce, Howard.
Liverpool: Reina, Darby, Skrtel, Carragher, Insua, Kuyt, Lucas, Gerrard, Aurelio, Torres, Ngog.
Subs: Cavalieri, Aquilani, Benayoun, Kyrgiakos, Babel, Spearing, Degen.
Referee: Martin Atkinson (W Yorkshire)

1701: Poor FA Cup Cheesy. She looked so happy when she bounced into the office a few hours ago: "I had eight games to keep an eye on this afternoon - and the only shock I can give you is League One Millwall's 1-1 draw at home to Championship Derby. Well done Lions and all that, but I had higher hopes, you know? Premier League sides Bolton, Burnley, Fulham and Aston Villa are through to the fourth round. They are joined by Ipswich, West Brom and Leicester from the Championship."

1700: Reading v Liverpool is due to kick-off in 15 minutes. Line-ups and team news on the way shortly.

From THFC_Jake on 606: "Gomes five clean sheets in a row. To think so many people were calling for his head last year. What a change of fortune."

1656: Full-times in featured games: Everton 3-1 Carlisle; Middlesbrough 0-1 Manchester City; Nottingham Forest 0-0 Birmingham; Sunderland 3-0 Barrow; Tottenham 4-0 Peterborough.

Everton goal: Young striker Kieran Agard wins a penalty and Leighton Baines slams it into the net to put gloss on the scoreline.

1654: GOAL Everton 3-1 Carlisle

1654: FA Cup Cheesy: "Aston Villa surely into the fourth round now as John Carew is brought down for a penalty - and steps up to convert it himself. Villa lead Blackburn 3-1. And Bolton go 4-0 up against Lincoln, Kevin Davies tapping in Matt Taylor's cross. Sub Dean Morgan sets up a frantic finish at Stadium:mk as he makes it MK Dons 1-2 Burnley in the 89th minute."

Spurs goal: Rubbing salt into the Posh wound now, the hosts, as Robbie Keane slams home from the penalty spot to make it four.

1652: GOAL Tottenham 4-0 Peterborough

1651: FA Cup Danny: "Second-half rout from Wigan - Scott Sinclair's notched on 90 minutes and they're 4-1 up on Hull."

Stoke goal: Matty Etherington pretty much makes it safe for the hosts, curling a free-kick up and over the wall and into the York net.

1649: GOAL Stoke 3-1 York

1648: And an even more subdued FA Cup Danny, the inventor of the word Cupset just two short FA Cup years ago: "The Seagulls lead the Gulls - Andrew Crofts' goal has put Brighton 1-0 up at Torquay and they look set to take their place in the fourth round."

1646: More FA Cup Cheesy, perhaps a little subdued: "Bolton home and dry at 3-0 against Lincoln after Gary Cahill's header from a Kevin Davies cross. Ivan Klasnic, whose substitution against Hull on Tuesday caused such uproar among the Bolton fans, has come off for Johan Elmander. Not so controversial this time, funnily enough. West Brom score a second against Huddersfield, substitute Chris Wood beating Terriers keeper Alex Smithies."

1644: A year ago, Nottingham Forest stunned football by thrashing Manchester City 3-0 at Eastlands. Today, Forest 0-0 Birmingham and Portsmouth 1-1 Coventry are our only chances of a Cupset. Until Reading play Liverpool later, anyway...

Everton goal: Well that finishes that off, then. Our last chance of a massive Cupset has gone as Tim Cahill's mis-hit shot smacks against a defender and falls back for the Australian to slam home. I almost feel like I should apologise.

1642: GOAL Everton 2-1 Carlisle

1642: And a bit of sense from FA Cup Cheesy: "Bad news for Blackpool. Having already lost Ian Evatt 10 minutes into the second half to a red, they're now down to nine men after Rob Edwards brings down Jonathan Walters. It gets worse: Ipswich sub Owen Garvan converts the resulting free-kick to put Roy Keane's men 2-1 up at Bloomfield Road. A Cupset off the menu at League One Huddersfield as Graham Dorrans gallops through one-on-one with the keeper and drives a shot low into the corner to put West Brom 1-0 up with 13 minutes remaining."

1641: Silly FA Cup Danny: "Preston's record FA Cup victory, by the way, was 26-0 against Hyde on 15 October 1887."

From emmetmcevoy on Twitter: "Everton may have made it to the final last season, but does anyone remember Oldham at Goodison the season before? Deja vu?"

1639: Is there a story out there? Is there a dramatic late twist that will give us our shock of the day. Remember, it's still Everton 1-1 Carlisle, Portsmouth 1-1 Coventry and Forest 0-0 Birmingham.

1637: It's all FA Cup Danny at the moment: "Great day for managerless Preston who have now scored 7 (seven) against sorry Colchester. Colchester, famously, beat Norwich 7-1 on the opening day of the season. Which, by football maths, naturally means that Preston would beat Norwich 14-1."

1636: Back under way at the Britannia Stadium, where it's Stoke City 2-1 York City.

BBC Sport's Phil McNulty at the City Ground: "Robert Earnshaw not only misses his penalty quite spectacularly, but is then denied by a superb save from Joe Hart. Birmingham, stung into action, respond and Kevin Phillips hits the post. Can I say it's turning into a real FA Cup tie?"

1632: FA Cup Danny: "Big goal for Scunthorpe as Paul Hayes scores against his former club to put them 1-0 up against Barnsley."

Someone has struck the woodwork
1631: Cupsets don't get any closer than this. Carlisle are agonisingly close to taking a stunning lead at Everton as Danny Livesey's shot strikes the crossbar.

1630: Luke Williams, the 16-year-old who became Middlesbrough's youngest player since 1905 when he appeared for them at Barnsley on Monday, is on against Manchester City.

1629: If I could choose a stalker, it probably would be FA Cup Danny: "Great half from Charles N'Zogbia - who only came on as a half-time substitute. He's prodded in his second, Wigan's third and they lead Hull 3-1. Crystal Palace have re-taken the lead against Sheffield Wednesday, Calvin Andrew's shot going in off the post to make it 2-1."

Spurs goal: Ben, below - I hope you're either loaded or joking. Gareth Bale hares away down the Tottenham left and his cross is impudently flicked in via the outside of Jermain Defoe's right foot.

1628: GOAL Tottenham 3-0 Peterborough

From Ben, London, via text on 81111: "Just bet fifty quid on Peterborough to come back from the dead to win 4-2, come on Posh!"

1626: Hullo, FA Cup Danny: "Turnaround at the DW Stadium. It's Wigan 2-1 Hull, as 19-year-old James McCarthy sends in a shot which takes a deflection and goes past the hapless Bo Myhill. Meanwhile, it's Preston 6-0 Colchester, Darren Carter with the latest goal."

1623: MISSED PENALTY (Nottingham Forest)
Stop laughing for long enough so I can tell you that Forest have blown a fabulous chance to take the lead as Robert Earnshaw balloons over after Gregory Vignal had fouled Paul Anderson. You can start laughing now.

1622: FA Cup Cheesy, with a twist: "Looks like being all over for Swindon as Fulham win a penalty for keeper David Lucas's foul on Andrew Johnson. But it's a weak spot-kick from Johnson, making his first start since October, and Lucas makes the save. Swindon had been in the middle of a decent spell of pressure before that incident, and the away fans are buzzing now."

From thewelshboycott on 606: "Why keep saying games are over when someone is 2-0 up? Don't you remember Peterborough 4-4 Cardiff last week???"

1621: Half-time in the delayed kick-off, where it's Stoke 2-1 York.

Sunderland goal: Could be a, er, barrow-load here. Phil Bardsley sends over a cross from the right and Fraizer Campbell, who is doing a good job of filling his boots today, heads into the minnows' net.

1618: GOAL Sunderland 3-0 Barrow

BBC Sport's Phil McNulty at the City Ground: "Lively start to the second half at the City Ground and Nottingham Forest should have taken the lead. Birmingham City have Joe Hart to thank for a fine save from Chris Cohen. Have both managers pointed out that a replay is not an option?"

1617: More from a smoking FA Cup Cheesy: "Ten-man Blackburn are back in it against Villa. Brad Guzan drops a corner right in front of Nikola Kalinic and the Croat striker can't miss. Blackburn trail 2-1."

Spurs goal: This one's over, too. Robbie Keane gets away down the Spurs' right and the skipper pulls it back for that man Niko Kranjcar to double their advantage.

1615: GOAL Tottenham 2-0 Peterborough

1615: We're flying now. FA Cup Danny: "They may not win the FA Cup, but they look like winning the (admittedly less presitigious) biggest FA Cup win on third round Saturday award. Well done Preston - they've notched three in the first seven second-half minutes, two from Jon Parkin and one Ben Williams own goal and they're 5-0 up on Colchester."

1613: Good job women can multi-task. Here's FA Cup Cheesy: "Whoah. Sorry, Lincoln, I appear to have cursed you with those positive words a moment ago. The Imps concede two goals in as many minutes just after the break. Moses Swaibu's own goal from a Matt Taylor throw-in is quickly followed by Chung-Yong Lee's strike. Blackpool now level against Ipswich in the all-Championship clash thanks to Brett Ormerod's equaliser from Charlie Adam's cross. Derby go behind against League One Millwall after Lewis Grabban's goal - but three minutes later, Kris Commons makes it 1-1."

Sunderland goal: Start the car, that one's all wrapped up. Daryl Murphy swings over a free-kick from the right and Fraizer Campbell heads home.

1612: GOAL Sunderland 2-0 Barrow

1609: FA Cup Danny: "All Premier League FA Cup tie fans will be interested in this one - Charles N'Zogbia has levelled from close range for Wigan, and they're 1-1 with Hull. Preston are well on the way to the fourth round as they go 3-0 up at home to Colchester."

From Paul__Fletcher on Twitter: "Freezing at Reading, but it will turn positively arctic for Rafa if Liverpool lose. Cannot happen, can it?"

1607: Double change for Man City at Boro, with Carlos Tevez and Gareth Barry on for Nigel de Jong and Micah Richards. Gary O'Neill is booked for diving in the City box.

1606: I'd be surprised if most of the games aren't getting back under way for the second half. Meanwhile at the Britannia, it remains Stoke 2-1 York with 10 minutes or so left in the first period.

From ThyBrad42 on Twitter: "Boro the better team up until Johnson went off injured. Lovely bit of play by Petrov, only City player who has looked any good."

1600: And more FA Cup Cheesy: "Managerless Bolton are up against Lincoln in the only Premier League v League Two tie of the round - and the Imps, managed by Chris Sutton, are holding their own. It's 0-0 at half-time. Lincoln are third bottom of the Football League, 72 places lower than the Trotters."

Second Stoke goal: They aren't the first and won't be the last team to be undone by Rory Delap's long throws. Another monster is launched into the York box and Ricardo Fuller heads the Potters into the lead. That's how to respond to going a goal behind.

First Stoke goal: Heartbreak. Rory Delap's long throws are causing the visitors all sorts of problems and from this particular one, poor Daniel Parslow can only head into his own net.

1557: GOAL Stoke City 2-1 York City

1557: GOAL Stoke City 1-1 York City

York goal: Oh God. Oh God. These are truly Cupsetting times - the Blue Square Premier League side have only gone and taken the lead in the delayed kick-off at the Britannia Stadium thanks to Neil Barrett's header.

1554: GOAL Stoke City 0-1 York City

1553: There are fingers and keyboards ablaze here at BBC towers. Here's FA Cup Danny: "Not a Cupset-heavy afternoon thus far - and chances of one at Fratton Park seem to have diminished. After Tommy Smith's good work the ball is eventually worked over to Kevin-Prince Boateng who heads Pompey level. Portsmouth 1-1 Coventry."

1551: Half-time in these featured games: Nottingham Forest 0-0 Birmingham; Everton 1-1 Carlisle; Middlesbrough 0-1 Man City; Sunderland 1-0 Barrow; Tottenham 1-0 Peterborough.

BBC Sport's Phil McNulty at the City Ground: "Bad moments for Birmingham City's Lee Carsley at Nottingham Forest. He slips attempting a challenge and is instantly in trouble clutching his knee. He has been carried off and Lee Bowyer is into the action."

1547: FA Cup Danny: "All square at Hillsborough, as Clint Hill's unfortunate own goal makes it Sheffield Wednesday 1-1 Crystal Palace."

City goal: Nice little passing move from the visitors and they send Benjani through on goal, the Zimbabwean with the Aussie Rules celebration making no mistake to give Roberto Mancini's side a lead they barely deserve.

1546: GOAL Middlesbrough 0-1 Manchester City

1545: Oh Dioufy, you had to try and ruin the day for everyone, didn't you? The latest misdemeanour from one of Britain's most easily dislikeable footballers sounds like a shocker.

1544: FA Cup Cheesy: "It's all going Villa's way against Blackburn. A few minutes ago, penalty-saving specialist Brad Guzan, who saved a total of four spot-kicks in Villa's Carling Cup win over Sunderland, kept out David Dunn's effort after Nigel Reo-Coker's foul on El-Hadji Diouf. And now Carlos Cuellar makes it 2-0, heading Ashley Young's free-kick from the left. Diouf's afternoon is over, too - he is shown a straight red for a horror tackle on Habib Beye. Burnley are cruising against MK Dons, Steven Fletcher latching on to Chris Eagles pass and shooting low past Willy Gueret. Leicester now level at 1-1 against Swansea, Andy King equalising from 15 yards."

From Anonymous, via text on 81111: "Despite Posh being 1-0 down against Spurs, I have to say Joe Lewis has been insane! Capello are you watching?"

1539: FA Cup Danny is more machine than man: "A brilliant free-kick from Geovanni has put Hull 1-0 up at the DW Stadium in the all-Premier League tie. Elsewhere, ultimate goal machine Rickie Lambert has smashed in another fabbo free-kick to put Southampton 1-0 up against Luton."

BBC Sport's Phil McNulty at the City Ground: "Nottingham Forest and Birmingham are restricting each other to half chances as opposed to clear-cut openings at the City Ground. Forest playing it around though and Birmingham getting involved with the odd snap shot from Cameron Jerome and Kevin Phillips."

Spurs goal: Another blow for Cupset fans, but it had been coming. Niko Kranjcar breaks from midfield, finds a bit of space and slams in a shot from long-range past keeper Joe Lewis.

1536: GOAL Tottenham 1-0 Peterborough

1536: I'll let FA Cup Danny fill in the blanks: "Oh Portsmouth. David Bell has drilled in the opening goal down at Fratton Park for lowly Championship Coventry and the beleaguered Premier League boys are 1-0 behind."

From Hazza1986 on Twitter: "COVENTRY SCORE!! COVENTRY SCORE!!"

1533: They are under way at Stoke. Repeat, they are under way at Stoke.

1531: Quickly followed by FA Cup Cheesy: "Another non-Cupset friendly goal and it goes to Burnley at MK Dons. Steven Fletcher is upended by Mathias Doumbe and Graham Alexander simply cannot miss penalties (or not very often anyway). The Scotland international scores his 71st in 76 attempts. He has never missed in 15 attempts for Burnley."

1530: The increasingly-prolific FA Cup Danny: "Minor Cupset fans (are there any?) could well have earmarked Deepdale as a place to get their thrills today. But out-of-form Championship Preston are now 2-0 up on bang-in-form League One-ers Colchester, thanks to Chris Sedgwick's goal."

From dippizuka on 606: "Man City are completely impotent right now. They look totally bereft of ideas while Boro are bossing the game in City's third of the pitch. Adam Johnson has looked good so far."

1525: Spurs have totally dominated the opening stages at White Hart Lane without finding the all-important breakthrough. Jermain Defoe somehow manages to hit the bar from only five yards out while Tom Huddlestone has a long-range shot saved by Joe Lewis.

1523: FA Cup Danny: "Crystal Palace have taken the lead at Sheffield Wednesday, Neil Danns putting the ball in from close range after some poor Owls defending."

From Jack, York fan at Stoke, via text on 81111: "York have just arrived to a resounding applause just as the snow kicks in again."

Carlisle goal: That's what we're here for. Adam Clayton makes amends for his early error as his shot is deflected in by team-mate Kevan Hurst, and Carlisle are level at Everton.

1519: GOAL Everton 1-1 Carlisle

1518: Here's FA Cup Danny: "I want a bit of this sweet FA Cup goal action too. Good news for Preston - Chris Brown has headed them 1-0 up against Colchester."

1518: More FA Cup Cheesy: "You want goals? I gots three of them. Aston Villa's 18-year-old wonderkid Nathan Delfouneso heads in an Ashley Young cross to make it 1-0 against Blackburn. That's his second goal in the FA Cup. David Cotterill's 30-yard stunners puts Swansea 1-0 up against Leicester. And England striker Bobby Zamora powers his way into the box before sliding the ball past the Swindon keeper to put Fulham ahead at the Cottage. That's his sixth goal in seven games, Fabio."

Sunderland goal: Advantage Premier League at the Stadium of Light, too. A cross from the left falls for Steed Malbranque and he fires in low left-footed for his first goal of the season.

1516: GOAL Sunderland 1-0 Barrow

1515: Stoke are without suspended defender Ryan Shawcross, but Andy Wilkinson has come through his fitness test and takes his place on the bench, while Michael Tonge is back from his loan spell at Preston and is also among the replacements. In total Stoke make three changes to the side that lost to Birmingham on Monday. Defender Leon Cort comes in for Shawcross while Danny Collins replaces Abdoulaye Faye and Tuncay Sanli is replaced by Ricardo Fuller. For York, defender Djoumin Sangare returns to the squad after missing the last 11 games through injury. They are unchanged from the team that beat Mansfield 3-0 on Boxing Day.

Everton goal: That's not very Cupset-friendly, is it? Adam Clayton's woeful backpass gifts possession to James Vaughan and he runs through to put the Premier League team in front.

1512: GOAL Everton 1-0 Carlisle

From philmcnulty on Twitter: "Great support for Birmingham at Forest. Clearly not heard the nonsense that the FA Cup is losing its importance. Great day in calendar this."

1510: One newspaper called Forest v Birmingham 'the unbeatables v the invincibles'. That's because Billy Davies' promotion-chasers have gone 16 games undefeated since losing at home to Blackburn in the Carling Cup in September, while the Blues are unbeaten in 11 since losing at Arsenal on 17 October.

1507: FA Cup Cheesy beats FA Cup Danny to the first netbuster of the day: "First FA Cup goal of the day goes to… Ipswich. On-loan Sunderland midfielder Jack Colback scores his third goal for Roy Keane's side to put them ahead at Ian Holloway's Blackpool."

From Pickles91 on 606: "York - could they not have left earlier?"

1502: Am hearing that Torquay v Brighton may have been delayed, too. More to follow on that.

1500: Safe to assume we're probably getting under way up and down the country. Let the carnage commence.

1458: York's team coach is going to get a police escort in a bid to get it to the Britannia Stadium in time for a delayed 1530 GMT kick-off for their tie against Stoke. It's all happening.

1457: I love the reaction to today's line-ups, especially now it's January. Squad players who aren't regular starters are being treated in one of two ways:
1) They are in the team and in the shop window.
2) They are out of the team, therefore out of the reckoning and available for transfer.

BBC Sport's Phil McNulty at the City Ground: "Former Nottingham Forest defender Kenny Burns - a title and European Cup winner at The City Ground - gets a warm welcome on the pitch before kick-off. And Birmingham City fans join in for a player who sprang to prominence there before Brian Clough, shall we say, knocked some of the rougher edges off his no-nonsense style. Only some of them mind you."

From Parksy the Stokie, via text on 81111: "You suggest that York may have phoned their teamsheet through, however Foyle (their manager) lives in Stoke still and was at the ground early. Obviously without his players."

Portsmouth chief exec Peter Storrie: "It's a Premier League side, so obviously it's not the best that you can't pay the players' wages. They [the owners] were looking to bring a major bank loan in. My understanding is that a short-term loan is coming in now and that the players will be paid on Monday or Tuesday."

1449: Gordon Strachan, bidding for just his third win as Middlesbrough boss since taking over 10 games ago, names an unchanged side for the visit of Manchester City. However, Roberto Mancini, out to maintain the impressive start to his Eastlands reign with a third win in three games, makes five changes to the City side that beat Wolves last time out. Benjani starts up front, while 19-year-old Belgian defender Dedryck Boyata is handed his first-team debut. Vladimir Weiss, Javier Garrido and Sylvinho also start, while Carlos Tevez, Gareth Barry and Craig Bellamy are on the bench.

1448: Middlesbrough v Manchester City line-ups:
Coyne, Hoyte, Riggott, Wheater, McMahon, O'Neil, Rhys Williams, Arca, Johnson, Bent, Franks.
Subs: Steele, Yeates, Emnes, Shawky, Grounds, Bennett, Luke Williams.
Man City: Given, Richards, Garrido, Sylvinho, Kompany, Zabaleta, Petrov, Weiss, De Jong, Mwaruwari, Boyata.
Subs: Taylor, Barry, Tevez, Vidal, Bellamy, Trippier, Tutte.
Referee: Stuart Attwell (Warwickshire)

BBC Sport's Phil McNulty at the City Ground: "Nottingham Forest manager Billy Davies admits promotion is his priority, but the City Ground is geared up for a big FA Cup third round tie against Birmingham City so he has not weakened his side too much. Forest fans are unlikely to regard beating in-form Birmingham as a giant-killing. Remember Forest's win at Manchester City last season? Plenty of talk about that prior to kick-off."

1444: There are three changes to Billy Davies' in-form Nottingham Forest side with James Perch taking the place of Nicky Shorey, Paul Anderson in for Nathan Tyson and Luke Chambers replacing Kelvin Wilson. Birmingham boss Alex McLeish will have raised the home fans' hopes of an upset with a raft of changes. Scott Dann and Stephen Carr are missing from the Blues' defence while Lee Bowyer and Christian Benitez are on the bench. Keith Fahey and Lee Carsley are included in midfield while Kevin Phillips gets a start alongside Cameron Jerome up front.

1442: Tottenham manager Harry Redknapp fields a strong side despite making five changes from the team that beat West Ham. Robbie Keane and Jermain Defoe start up front, with Niko Kranjcar on the right in place of Aaron Lennon. Sebastien Bassong comes in for Ledley King while Benoit Assou-Ekotto and Vedran Corluka are replaced by Alan Hutton and Gareth Bale. Peterborough are without Cup-tied midfielder Josh Simpson and defender Exodus Geohaghon, but goalkeeper Joe Lewis is fit after limping off in the 4-4 draw against Cardiff.

1439: Kick-off at Stoke v York has been put back to 1530 GMT.

1438: Sunderland make one change to their starting line-up as Steed Malbranque returns from a thigh strain to replace Nyron Nosworthy. Barrow make two changes from their Boxing Day draw at Gateshead, with Paul Rutherford and keeper Tim Deasy both returning.

1437: Tottenham v Peterborough line-ups:
Gomes, Hutton, Dawson, Bassong, Bale, Kranjcar, Huddlestone, Palacios, Modric, Keane, Defoe.
Subs: Alnwick, Pavlyuchenko, Crouch, Naughton, Giovani, Corluka, Rose.
Peterborough: Lewis, Griffiths, Bennett, Morgan, Williams, Whelpdale, Frecklington, Coutts, Lee, Boyd, Mackail-Smith.
Subs: McKeown, Rowe, Diagouraga, Batt, Wright, Green, McCrae.
Referee: Lee Mason (Lancashire)

1435: We still don't know what's happening at Stoke. What we do know is that unless you give your team sheet to the officials 45 minutes before kick-off, you get a fine, so York have probably phoned their team through. Remember, their team bus has still not arrived at the Britannia.

1433: Nottingham Forest v Birmingham line-ups:
Nottm Forest:
Camp, Perch, Morgan, Chambers, Gunter, Anderson, Majewski, McKenna, Cohen, Blackstock, Earnshaw.
Subs: Smith, Wilson, McGugan, Adebola, Tyson, McCleary, McGoldrick.
Birmingham: Hart, Parnaby, Ridgewell, Roger Johnson, Vignal, Damien Johnson, Ferguson, Carsley, Fahey, Phillips, Jerome.
Subs: Doyle, Bowyer, Martin Taylor, Benitez, McFadden, McSheffrey, Queudrue.
Referee: Steve Bennett (Kent)

1431: Everton make two changes from the side that beat Burnley last time out, bringing in Phil Neville and James Vaughan for Leon Osman and Yakubu. Carlisle make only one change from the team that drew at Tranmere, with Tom Taiwo replacing Peter Murphy.

From ajt__1989 on 606: "With their current injury crisis, why are Everton playing such a strong team?! At least rest half your first XI against Carlisle - if they get any more injuries today I will have no sympathy, that's ridiculous from Moyes."

1428: Stoke v York line-ups:
Sorensen, Huth, Cort, Higginbotham, Collins, Lawrence, Delap, Whitehead, Etherington, Beattie, Fuller.
Subs: Simonsen, Whelan, Sidibe, Pugh, Sanli, Tonge, Wilkinson.
York: Ingham, Parslow, McGurk, Graham, Meredith, Lawless, Barrett, Mackin, Carruthers, Rankine, Brodie.
Subs: Mimms, Purkiss, Ferrell, Gash, Pacquette, Sangare, Gall.
Referee: Mike Jones (Cheshire)

1424: Sunderland v Barrow line-ups:
Fulop, Bardsley, Cana, Da Silva, McCartney, Malbranque, Meyler, Henderson, Murphy, Campbell, Bent.
Subs: Carson, Healy, O'Donovan, Reed, Anderson, Noble, Liddle.
Barrow: Deasy, Spender, Bolland, Pearson, Jelleyman, Bond, Rutherford, Hulbert, Goodfellow, Blundell, Walker.
Subs: Tomlinson, Jones, Boyd, Logan, Sheridan, Bayliss, Rothery.
Referee: Neil Swarbrick (Lancashire)

1421: Aston Villa have made seven changes for their home tie against Blackburn, who in turn bring in nine new players from their last league game. Villa are captained by Nigel Reo-Coker, with young Nathan Delfouneso up front and Ashley Young back from a ban.

1420: Everton v Carlisle line-ups:
Howard, Hibbert, Heitinga, Neill, Baines, Pienaar, Neville, Cahill, Fellaini, Bilyaletdinov, Vaughan.
Subs: Nash, Coleman, Duffy, Forshaw, Agard, Baxter, Mustafi.
Carlisle: Collin, Keogh, Livesey, Harte, Horwood, Hurst, Clayton, Kavanagh, Taiwo, Robson, Pericard.
Subs: Pidgeley, Bridge-Wilkinson, Murphy, Anyinsah, Dobie, Burns, Kane.
Referee: Jon Moss (W Yorkshire)

Peterborough boss Mark Cooper: "We haven't come here to make the numbers up. We want something from the game. We need to shake things up in January though and I don't think it will be long until we get off the bottom of the table. It doesn't matter what team we play today, we'll be up for it."

1417: Roberto Mancini takes his Manchester City side to Middlesbrough today, scene of an 8-1 crime scene less than a couple of years ago. Mancini will be up for the Cup - his record in the Italian equivalent is nothing short of stunning, having won the Coppa Italia no fewer than six times as a player and on four occasions as a gaffer. Want an omen? The team that beats Boro has gone on to lose in the final in each of the last five seasons.

From unclemoo on Twitter: "Anonymous is welcome to come and set fire to our offices near Newcastle-under-Lyme. I'd be happy to go home early."

Nottingham Forest boss Billy Davies: "We're delighted with the situation. We're a young side moving in right direction. But there's no complacency, we're a hard working football club full of hard working individuals. We face a very in-form Premier League side who are flying high - we face a big test but these are type of challenges you relish, this is what football is all about. But I've made changes to the side because, although we respect every competition we play in, the league is more important for us than the Cup. We've got to focus mainly on league competition."

1409: The York team bus is still 25 miles away from Stoke, meaning there's absolutely no chance they'll get there in time. Standstill on the M6. Keep you posted.

1407: We might not have pictures, but there's no shame in rolling back the years and stitching your ear to the wireless. We've got local radio commentaries from loads of ties, so fill your lugholes.

From (understandably) anonymous, via text on 81111: "If the York game does get called off after this ongoing four-hour drive, I'm going to drive the rest of the way to Stoke anyway and break something."

1359: It's still snowing at Boro, but the police and the referee are both happy for it to go ahead as things stand.

1358: If I have a favourite feature on the BBC Sport website, it's probably the 'Where are they now?' ones. Bevo has struck gold again this time with a remarkably in-depth look at the 1980 FA Cup final, when Second Division West Ham stunned First Division Arsenal thanks to Trevor Brooking's stooping header. Come to think of it, I'm sure I got in David Price's cab at East Croydon once...

1354: I've never bled trying to get to a football match, but I take the point of No.7 on 606: "As responsible football fans who have all somehow or other suffered, cried and bled to get to a football match, we owe it to get the Everton game delayed. I start a petition - 3.45pm kick-off."

1351: Am now receiving missives to the effect that the games at Sunderland and Middlesbrough will both be called off if it is still snowing at 1430 GMT. What a hammer blow that would be to proceedings.

1347: Getting a lot of texts from Carlisle fans who are really struggling to make it to Goodison Park in time for kick-off, for whatever reason (car, train etc). Any chance of a little delay?

1345: The only thing today is missing is BBC Sport's Mr FA Cup himself, Chris Bevan. But what a lot of treats he's left us in his absence. First up, there's a cracking tale of non-league hope courtesy of York City chairman Jason McGill. A Cupset is not top of his agenda, but it might be in the back of Stoke's minds this afternoon (if the game goes ahead).

1342: News just in that there is going to be a briefing between the referee and the police at Stoke in a couple of minutes' time. The pitch is playable, but there is some concern about supporters' safety in the areas outside the ground.

From Olly en route to the Brittania, via text on 81111: "Come on York. Make the heavy snow, rain, traffic, cracked windscreen worth the trip. We can do it!"

From restlessole on Twitter: "I just hope Everton don't slip up against Carlisle. We've had enough bad luck this season!"

1333: I'm being bombarded with enquiries regarding those games I'm giving the treatment today. They are these: Everton v Carlisle, Middlesbrough v Manchester City, Forest v Birmingham, Stoke v York, Sunderland v Barrow and Spurs v Peterborough. However, as the story of the day may unfold away from one of these venues, I retain the right to be flexible. Amen to that.

1330: Stevo's time-consuming Predos:
Aston Villa 1-0 Blackburn
Blackpool 2-1 Ipswich
Bolton 3-1 Lincoln
Everton 3-1 Carlisle
Fulham 2-0 Swindon
Huddersfield 2-2 West Brom
Leicester 2-1 Swansea
Middlesbrough 1-3 Man City
Millwall 2-2 Derby
MK Dons 1-1 Burnley
Nott'm Forest 1-1 Birmingham
Plymouth 1-2 Newcastle
Portsmouth 1-2 Coventry
Preston 2-0 Colchester
Reading 1-3 Liverpool
Scunthorpe 1-2 Barnsley
Sheff Wed 2-2 Crystal Palace
Southampton 3-1 Luton
Stoke 3-1 York
Sunderland 5-1 Barrow
Torquay 2-2 Brighton
Tottenham 5-1 Peterborough
Wigan 0-0 Hull
Lawro's predictions

From redboychris on 606: "I think the shocks will be provided by Huddersfield, Middlesbrough, Nottingham Forest and Blackburn."

1322: Magic. In order to make today as special as possible, I've bagged the services of two real-life text comm legends to help us through the afternoon. Drumroll, please, for the great FA Cup Cheesy and the one and only FA Cup Danny. They will be sending epistles on the games I'm not giving both barrels to - but fret not, every tie will get a mention at some stage, and if there's a story brewing anywhere, you'll hear about it first right here.

1320: Now, are you sitting comfortably? There's some business to get through, so listen up and listen good, because I shall only say this once (and then remind you about what I said at 1320 GMT for the rest of the afternoon): I will not be doing goalflashes from every game. It's so important that you know this that I've gone and put it in bold. At 1500 GMT, there are 22 kick-offs in the FA Cup. Even if we wanted to (we don't), the fingers that can type that quickly haven't yet been born. As a result, some games will get the full treatment and all the others will be dealt with in the form of regular updates - as we do with the Football League on a standard Saturday. Are you with me so far?

From Stuart, grumpy Carlisle fan, via text on 81111: "Over 10,000 Carlisle United fans stuck in Lancaster for over two hours, struggling to make the game. Nightmare day!"

From Vic, London, via text on 81111: "I LOVE the third round of the FA Cup! So many matches going on, so many goals to read updates about, Cupsets, replays, high-scoring thrillers - it's got it all! And the magic of the FA Cup means that even a stale 0-0 draw between two lower league teams has an element of excitement! What a day this is going to be!"

1312: There's no early game now, but that just means there's more time to chew the fat, and here's how: Tweet me up right here (with Stephen Fry on sabbatical, the rest of us must stick together), get the texts flying in to 81111 (UK) and +44 7786200666 (worldwide), and get stuck in to some lively chat on 606.

1307: From the three o'clock kick-offs, we have another brace of casualties. Accrington v Gillingham has gone with the Crown Ground snowed under, so those boys will have to find another date, as will Brentford and Doncaster, what with Griffin Park being unplayable and all.

1304: We do have an early faller, kids. In the south-west of the great city of Bristol, the freezing temperatures have rendered Ashton Gate unplayable, so City and Cardiff - who were supposed to kick off at 1230 GMT - will have to try again another time.

1300: Happy New Year punters, and welcome to one of the great weekends in the sporting calendar. Over the course of the next two days, let us tell you the magical story of the third round of the FA Cup. What a way to start a World Cup year.

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see also
When the Hammers shocked Arsenal
01 Jan 10 |  FA Cup
Lawro's predictions
03 Jan 10 |  Football
FA Cup commentaries
03 Nov 10 |  FA Cup
All-time Top 10 clubs
16 Aug 10 |  FA Cup
Football on the BBC
11 Aug 10 |  Football

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