FA Cup giant-killing: Fulham 0-1 Sheffield United

Sheffield United celebrate
Sheffield United celebrate
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Sheffield United scored a sensational late goal to beat Fulham as they and their noisy army of fans enjoyed an FA Cup giant-killing night to remember.

With 2,000 Unitedites in one end at Craven Cottage for the FA Cup fourth round replay with Fulham, United had more than their share of the ball and certainly the better quality chances in the first half.

Fulham's Pajtim Kasami (centre) goes down in the penalty area under the challenge of Sheffield United's Harry Maguire (right) late in the game during the FA Cup Fourth Round Replay at Craven Cottage, London.

Fulham's Pajtim Kasami (centre) goes down in the penalty area under the challenge of Sheffield United's Harry Maguire (right) late in the game during the FA Cup Fourth Round Replay at Craven Cottage, London.

And they fought hard right the way through to extra time, when Harry Maguire headed downwards, for Shaun Miller to nod in the net (120 minutes.)

That prompted joyous scenes after the final whistle as the United team celebrated with their support.

There had been four changes for United, eight for Fulham, whose last four Premier league results were all defeats: 1-4 0-2 0-2 and 0-3.

United could have taken the lead in the first 100 seconds, Jamie Murphy sweeping a right footer a few inches wide of the post from the edge of the box, David Stockdale floundering.

Sheffield United manager Nigel Clough checks his watch before the FA Cup Fourth Round Replay at Craven Cottage, London. Pic: Andrew Matthews/PA Wire

Sheffield United manager Nigel Clough checks his watch before the FA Cup Fourth Round Replay at Craven Cottage, London. Pic: Andrew Matthews/PA Wire

That was to be the best chance of the early exchanges.

United were playing with confidence and rarely under threat, Muamer Tankovic appearing the only danger man of the first half hour.

John Brayford took matters in his own hands, on 34 minutes, charging towards the penalty area and shooting a foot or two wide of Stockdale’s left post. Then Murphy headed a super Conor Coady cross just wide of the other stick.

Fulham weren’t as penetrating, although Dan Burn could have punished the Blades with a header.

Bob Harris put the wind up Fulham at the start of the second half, his left footed free kick not clearing the angle of bar and post by much.

Stockdale then had to get behind a stinging drive, again from Harris.

Fulham seemed to be relying on height and set-pieces, they certainly didn’t look a top-flight side.

The introduction of Damien Duff and Ashkan Dejagah on 59 minutes, perked up the home side though.

And after 75 minutes Jose Baxter replaced Chris Porter as United looked to find a spark.

But with mistakes littering the game, the end result was not easy to forecast.

Fulham appealed in vain for a late penalty when Harry Maguire put his hand on attacker Clint Dempsey’s chest.

Extra Time became a reality after the 90 minutes ended goalless.

Brayford almost put United in front when he unleashed a strong shot, parried away, by Stockdale.

While Pajtim Kasami’s left footed shot from outside the box was close, to settling it.

But a stooping header from Miller delivered a fantastic victory for United.

It may not have been a game for purists - but United can now look forward to taking in the winner of tomorrow’s Nottingham Forest v Preston North End encounter.

TEAMS:

Fulham: Stockdale; Passley, Hangeland, Burn, Amorebieta; Kasami, Tanković, Parker, Kačaniklić; Dempsey; Rodallega

Subs: Stekelenburg, Sidwell, Karagounis, Duff, Dejagah, David, Christensen

United: Howard, Harris, Brayford, Maguire, Flynn, Porter, McGinn, Collins, Coady, Scougall, Murphy.

Subs: Hill, Baxter, Miller, Long, Kennedy, De Girolamo, Dimaio.

Ref: Neil Swarbrick

Attendance: 10,139

Read a full analysis and back page verdict in tomorrow’s Star.