The Giant Killers

Every F A cup giant killing since 1888

THE GIANT KILLERS

 

1892

1891 - 1893

The Wednesday 4-1 Bolton Wanderers

First round: 23rd January 1892

Oliver Grove, Sheffield

Scorers: {Wednesday} Fred Spiksley-2, Bob Brown, R Richardson: {Bolton} Di Jones

Att: 17,000

Ranked at the time: 2

Bolton: 1:John Sutcliffe, 2:John Somerville, 3:Di Jones, 4:Alex Paton, 5:Kenny Davenport, 6:Bob Roberts, 7:jimmy Munro, 8:James Brogan, 9:Jimmy Turner, 10:Jack McNee, 11:David McFetteridge

Nottingham Forest 2-0 Preston North End

Quarter final: 13th February 1892

Town Ground, Nottingham

Scorers: Sandy Higgins, William 'Tich' Smith

Ranked at the time: 3

For the fourth consecutive year Sheffield Wednesday came out on top against elite opposition when easily beating Bolton in the first round at Olive Grove in a replayed tie after Bolton had lodged a protest against the state of the Olive Grove pitch at the first game which Wednesday won 2-1. The replay came a week after the first meeting and saw two goals from two players who would go on to become Wednesday legends for different reasons. Fred Spiksley was a flair player in an era when they were few and far between who was known for his back heels and great goals. Four years after this game he scored twice to help Wednesday win the cup for the first time before embarking on a colourful coaching career abroad. Spiksley went on to win national titles as a coach in Sweden, Germany and Mexico either side of the first world war. He was caught in Germany when the war broke out and was interned at Ruhleben internment camp with, among others, the great Steve Bloomer but managed to escape in 1915. By the early thirties Fred was back in England coaching with Fulham, where he made a series of training films, some of which survive and can be found on Youtube. It was also at the end of the twenties and start of the thirties that Bob Brown was securing his legendary status at Hillsborough by guiding the team, as manager, to consecutive league titles. Bob took charge at Hillsborough in 1920 after nine years at the helm of Portsmouth and remained for thirteen years. Sadly Bob died in 1933 at Leeds train station, a broken man having lost his wife just days before while Fred passed away at Goodwood racecourse in 1948 having enjoyed the days racing.

Wednesday went on to the quarter finals where their cup run was ended by West Bromwich Albion. At the same time Nottingham Forest were securing their first ever defeat of a top flight club in the cup at the Town Ground, which was situated at the opposite end of Trent Bridge to their present City Ground home. The openeer against Preston was scored by Alex 'Sandy' Higgins, whose previous experience included a stint in the top flight with Derby County before joining Forest. Higgins was a Scot from Kilmarnock who passed away in 1920 on the very day his beloved home town team won the Scottish cup for the first time. His son, also called Sandy Higgins, went on to win a cup winner's medal with Newcastle in 1910. Forest faced West Bromwich Albion in the semi final and were only a few minutes away from their first cup final when they conceeded a late equaliser at Molineaux to send the game to a replay, which was also drawn. The third match was played in a howling snowstorm at Derby's racecourse and Albion's better stamina shone through. Sandy Higgins scored a brace but his side went down 2-6.

Both Forest and Wednesday were enjoying good seasons in the Football Alliance while Preston and Bolton were both involved in the League Championship race. The two vanquished league sides had to settle for runners up and third spots respectively behind champions Sunderland. Forest were crowned Alliance champions and both they and Wednesday threw their hats in the football league election ring with the news that the league was to be expanded to sixteen teams. Even if they failed both clubs knew they would still be joining the league as proposals were in full swing to invite the Football Alliance en block to become the league second division. Wednesday, the team who had defeated league opposition in every season, came top of the poll while Alliance champions Forest were second with one vote less to secure a place among the elite that Autumn for both clubs.

Preston: 1:Jimmy Trainer, 2:Bob Holmes, 3:Nick Ross, 4:James Sharp, 5:Moses Sanders, 6:Billy Stewart, 7:Jack Gordon, 8:Jimmy Ross, 9:Frank Becton, 10:Thoma Towie, 11:Hugh Gallacher