STUNNED MAN UTD OUT OF CUP

LONDON - Third-tier Leeds United produced the shock of the third round by knocking record 11-times winners Manchester United out of the FA Cup with a 1-0 victory at Old Trafford yesterday.

LONDON - Third-tier Leeds United produced the shock of the third round by knocking record 11-times winners Manchester United out of the FA Cup with a 1-0 victory at Old Trafford yesterday.

Fallen giants Leeds, the League One leaders, who are 43 places below English champions United, won thanks to Jermaine Beckford's 19th-minute goal and then denied their hosts, second in the Premier League, an equaliser.

It was the first time United manager Sir Alex Ferguson has lost in the third round of the FA Cup, the stage at which teams from England's top two divisions enter the knockout tournament, since he arrived at Old Trafford 24 years ago.

Not since 1984, when beaten by third-tier Bournemouth, had United lost at this stage of the competition. The victory was also Leeds's first at Old Trafford since 1981.

United did threaten and, after Leeds keeper Casper Ankergren had advanced to block Wayne Rooney's initial shot, Jason Crowe had to clear off the line from the England striker. Ankergren then produced another good block to deny Danny Welbeck early in the second half.

Just short of the hour mark, Alex Ferguson made a double substitution with veteran forward Ryan Giggs replacing Gabriel Obertan and striker Antonio Valencia coming on for Danny Welbeck.

With 20 minutes left, Ferguson sent on Michael Owen, his final substitution, only to see the England striker scuff a shot from inside the box moments later.

l Holders Chelsea made sure there was no slip-up at Stamford Bridge where they crushed Championship (second division) Watford 5-0 after streaking into a 3-0 lead in 22 minutes.

Daniel Sturridge, John Eustace (own goal) and Florent Malouda settled the outcome with early goals before Sturridge and Frank Lampard scored in the second half to ensure Chelsea eliminated Watford for the second season running. AFP-Reuters

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