Ciaran Clark scores as Villa finally shake off Wycombe
FA Cup replay round-up: Bolton edge Eastleigh; West Brom through; Portsmouth shock Ipswich
Ciaran Clark celebrates after scoring Aston Villa’s opening goal in the FA Cup third-round replay against Wycombe Wanderers at Villa Park. Photograph: Laurence Griffiths/Getty Images
FA Cup replay round-up: Late goals from Republic of Ireland defender Ciaran Clark and Idrissa Gana spared Aston Villa’s blushes for a second time as the Premier League strugglers overcame Wycombe 2-0.
Villa Park was the scene of Wycombe’s semi-final appearance in 2001. Wanderers were heroic in defeat to Liverpool that day and it was a similar story on Tuesday night.
The League Two promotion hopefuls had more than held their own against a much-changed, but still strong, Villa team and created the better chances before Clark headed home with 15 minutes remaining.
Substitute Gana sealed a fourth-round home tie against Manchester City at the end of the month with a second goal in the final minute.
Non-league Eastleigh’s FA Cup journey ended in a 3-2 loss at Bolton as captain Darren Pratley’s second-half winner eliminated a club 53 places below Wanderers in the football pyramid.
In an enthralling third-round tie that had been snubbed for television coverage, the only side outside of the Football League still in the competition led through Joe Partington’s 11th-minute opener.
At that point Neil Lennon’s Championship side were facing up to the possibility of being embarrassingly dumped out of the FA Cup just a day after HM Revenue and Customs had, unsuccessfully, tried to have them liquidated in the High Court over an unpaid tax bill of £2.2million.
And even though Kaid Mohamed levelled in first-half stoppage time, Pratley, whose 87th-minute equaliser forced this replay, proved the Spitfires’ scourge again to set up a fourth-round game against Leeds.
Salomon Rondon’s first FA Cup goal saw West Brom past Bristol City 1-0 at Ashton Gate.
Rondon settled the tie 1-0 in Albion’s favour with only his fourth goal for the Baggies since completing a £12 million move from Zenit St Petersburg last August.
The Venezuelan had not scored since the end of October, but he lived up to his hefty price tag with a delightful 52nd-minute finish after stealing between City defenders Aden Flint and Derrick Williams to control Craig Dawson’s cross.
Tony Pulis’s Premier League side were well worth the victory and might feel a decent cup run is on the agenda with League One Peterborough their fourth-round visitors to The Hawthorns.
Reading booked a fourth-round meeting with Walsall with a 5-2 victory over 10-man Huddersfield at the Madejski Stadium.
Down to 10 men, Huddersfield were unable to cope in the second half, with Vydra helping himself to an expertly executed hat-trick. Alex Fernandez added Reading’s fifth in stoppage time.
Marc McNulty scored one goal and made another as Portsmouth stunned ten-man Championship club Ipswich with a 2-1 win at Fratton Park.
Two goals in five first-half minutes from Ipswich old-boy Gary Roberts and McNulty booked League Two Pompey a fourth-round date with Premier League neighbours Bournemouth.
It was a notable scalp for the 2008 winners who went close to knocking° Mick McCarthy’s side out in the initial tie at Portman Road, denied by a late leveller.
MK Dons deservedly claimed the prize of a home fourth-round tie against Chelsea after inflicting a 3-0 replay defeat on neighbours Northampton.
Midfielder Ben Reeves was involved in two second-half goals that finally gave the Championship side due reward for their dominance, netting the crucial opener from the penalty spot then releasing substitute Josh Murphy nine minutes later. Simon Church rounded off the scoring with a 90th minute spot kick.
League Two promotion chasers Northampton, cheered on by 7,000 travelling fans, played some enterprising football although their best chance of progress disappeared through MK’s late equaliser in the original tie 10 days ago.
Two ties went to penalties, with Bradford beating Bury 4-2 on spot kicks at Valley Parade in a League One battle, while Carlisle beat Yeovil 5-4 in the all League Two affair at Huish Park.