Tuesday, January 24, 2012

English Leagues in the 60s : Manchester United Leicester City FA Cup 1962 1963

25 May 1963
Wembley Stadium,

Referee Ken Aston
Attendance 99,604

  Manchester United finally got to start their third round tie with Huddersfield on 4 March. They made up for lost time by reaching Wembley just fifty-four days later, the quickest-ever run on record. Huddersfield were swept aside 5-0 with Denis Law scoring a hat-trick. A week later, Albert Quixall's goal was enough to beat Aston Villa. Five days on and United were in the quarter-finals after Quixall and Law had ensured a 2-1 win over Chelsea. Before the month was out Coventry had been seen off 3-1 with a brace from Bobby Charlton. Having wiped off the backlog. United waited the regulation four weeks before meeting this season's surprise package at Villa Park in the semi-final. Southampton have often reserved their finest Cup moments when playing outside the top division. 

 This year was no exception, as they made the semifinals for the first time since 1927. Pick of their ties was a sixdi round clash with First Division Nottingham Forest. After Terry Paine had earned them a 1 -1 draw at the City Ground, the two teams batded out a 3-3 thriller at the Dell. The second replay at White Hart Lane was much anticipated, but even the most die-hard Saint could hardly have dared to predict the outcome.  Southampton romped home 5-0, with two each for Burnside and O'Brien. At Villa Park they stuck gamely to the task, but a single goal from Denis Law saw United to Wembley. In the final, United would meet Leicester, who were hoping for third time lucky after Wembley defeats in 1949 and 1961 .They had an easier route; their only top flight opposition in the earlier rounds were Leyton Orient and Ipswich, both struggling near the foot of the table. A semi-final against Liverpool was a tougher proposition, but Gordon Banks was a formidable barrier and another clean sheet saw Leicester go through with a goal from left-winger Mike Stringfellow.

 The Foxes finished fourth in the league, their highest position since 1929, and they started as favourites against a United side who finished only three points above relegated neighbours City. It was United who drew first blood. Just before the half-hour Crerand found Law, who swivelled and shot past Gordon Banks. United doubled their lead twelve minutes into the second-half, when David Herd fastened on to a rebound once Charlton's shot had been parried by Banks. Leicester were experiencing that sinking Wembley feeling once again, but gave themselves hope with ten minutes left after Ken Keyworth had flung himself at a McLintock cross. It was a flicker that was snuffed out five minutes later after a rare error from Gordon Banks. The Leicester keeper, who was to achieve immortality at the same ground three years later as part of England's World Cup-winning side, dropped a cross from Johnny Giles, and Herd grabbed his second. The team dubbed a 'ragged rabble' in the press had won United their first trophy since Munich. For Bill Foulkes and Bobby Charlton, who had played in the Busby Babes' last final in 1957 and the emotional post-Munich encounter with Bolton a year later, this was a poignant occasion. For Matt Busby, five years of patient rebuilding was bearing fruit. A second golden age at OldTrafford was about to unfold.

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