Five things we learned from the FA Cup fifth round's weekend matches


Seven FA Cup fifth-round ties were played across Friday, Saturday and Sunday, with Chelsea’s home clash against Manchester United to come on Monday evening.

Here, we take a look at five things we learned from the last-16 action so far.

Not so magic

After the previous two rounds had delivered a number of shocks, round five was a reminder of how the competition can be, proving considerably less exciting for observers hoping for giant-killings as all six of the clubs facing lower-league opposition progressed to the quarter-finals.

The last eight certainly looks interesting ahead of Monday’s draw, though, given it will feature two non-Premier League sides – Championship duo Millwall and Swansea – and only two of the top-flight’s ‘big six’.

City march on

Premier League leaders Manchester City are in the hat after a 4-1 win at League Two Newport that showed their ability to handle a different kind of assignment to usual.

On a patchy Rodney Parade pitch, Pep Guardiola’s men withstood some notable pressure before securing a convincing victory to remain fighting for four trophies.

Foden shines again

A standout performer in that contest was City’s teenage midfielder Phil Foden as he gave further demonstration of his exciting talent. Having scored two goals in the tie, the 18-year-old England Under-21s international now has four in his last five appearances.

Newport County AFC v Manchester City - FA Cup Fifth Round

Wolves in the hunt

Wolves were another Premier League side who successfully came through a tricky-looking away tie, triumphing 1-0 against Bristol City to snap the Championship outfit’s nine-match winning run.

Nuno Espirito Santo’s seventh-place side are having an extremely impressive season and at the moment the possibility of that including an FA Cup triumph does not seem at all unrealistic.

Cole still making his mark

Although his new side were beaten, Derby’s new signing Ashley Cole showed he is still able to have an impact on games at the age of 38 in the 2-1 loss at Brighton.

Brighton and Hove Albion v Derby County - FA Cup Fifth Round

Brought on by his former Chelsea team-mate Frank Lampard at half-time with the visitors 2-0 down, the veteran full-back – on a deal until the end of the season – went on to score an 81st-minute header, his first goal in English football since September 2012.

His performance was praised afterwards by Lampard, who feels it may not prove Cole’s final appearance in a competition he has won a record seven times.

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