The FA Cup - Replay
Sheff UtdSheffield United1PrestonPreston North End3

Sheffield United 1-3 Preston North End

Paul Gallagher
Paul Gallagher scored Preston's goal in the original fourth-round tie at Deepdale

Preston secured an FA Cup fifth-round home tie against Manchester United with three goals in 10 second-half minutes against Sheffield United.

Jamie Murphy gave hosts United a half-time lead in this fourth-round replay against their League One rivals.

But Paul Gallagher, who scored a stunning free-kick in the first tie at Deepdale, did it again to equalise.

Paul Huntington then headed in Scott Laird's corner before Gallagher converted a penalty to secure victory.

Preston were good value for their victory against a Sheffield United side who were FA Cup semi-finalists last season.

Nigel Clough's team, knocked out of the League Cup at the semi-final stage by Tottenham six days ago, were lucky not to go behind when Preston striker Kevin Davies - a boyhood Blades fan - chipped against the post after latching on to Chris Basham's weak back header.

Preston arrived at Bramall Lane without a win in seven matches, and might have been forgiven if their confidence had dipped after conceding a soft goal seven minutes before the break.

Cup specialists conquered
Sheffield United's defeat was only the third they have suffered in their last 18 FA Cup ties. Three of the sides they beat during that run were in the Premier League - Aston Villa and Fulham last season, and Queens Park Rangers this term. All three of those wins were away from home.

Murphy, who signed a new Sheffield United contract at the weekend, collected Michael Doyle's pass and rolled a shot under keeper Thorsten Stuckmann, who probably should have saved it.

North End's second-half fightback, though, was emphatic. Home keeper Mark Howard made a superb double save to stop Laird and Chris Humphrey shortly before on-loan Leicester forward Gallagher hit an unstoppable free-kick into the top corner on 63 minutes.

The visitors were in front six minutes later, as centre-back Huntington headed in Laird's corner for his second goal in two matches.

Clough, who reverted to the side that ran Tottenham close last Wednesday after making 10 changes for Saturday's 2-0 League One victory over Swindon, was unable to inspire a revival in a side playing their 40th game of the season.

And Gallagher made sure of the win in the 73rd minute by drilling a penalty into the corner of the net after Humphrey was tripped.

Preston manager Simon Grayson:

"It's been a disappointing few weeks for us but tonight is an excellent result. There was a massive incentive tonight to play Manchester United, and it brought out the best in us.

"We had to be focused tonight, because we know how good Sheffield United are. They have done fantastically well in the cups. We had to be at it, and from the first whistle we were really good and dominated, and they scored against the run of play. We kept our belief going.

"It's a massive result, and there was a massive carrot for us. Forget Manchester United, we just wanted to get back to winning ways. This result can hopefully now galvanise our league form."

Sheffield United boss Nigel Clough:

"I'm bitterly disappointed. For Manchester United, the biggest club in the country, to come to town as a League One club was a massive incentive.

"But we didn't play like that was the carrot at the end of the tie.

"Maybe we thought the tie was over when we brought them back here but that is never the case against a team like Preston.

"They thoroughly deserved their victory."


Sheff Utd

Formation 4-4-1-1

  • 1Howard
  • 7Flynn
  • 6Basham
  • 19McEveley
  • 3Harris
  • 20Campbell-Ryce
  • 10ScougallSubstituted forReedat 64'minutes
  • 8DoyleSubstituted forDe Girolamoat 80'minutes
  • 9Murphy
  • 11Baxter
  • 12McNultyBooked at 51mins


  • 2Alcock
  • 16Davies
  • 22Reed
  • 23De Girolamo
  • 24Turner
  • 27Kennedy
  • 34Cuvelier


Formation 3-5-2

  • 21Stuckmann
  • 23HuntingtonBooked at 70mins
  • 5Clarke
  • 15Woods
  • 4Wiseman
  • 30Brownhill
  • 8Kilkenny
  • 12GallagherBooked at 48mins
  • 3LairdSubstituted forWelshat 88'minutes
  • 9DaviesSubstituted forGarnerat 88'minutes
  • 7HumphreySubstituted forReidat 83'minutes


  • 6Wright
  • 14Garner
  • 17Reid
  • 19Welsh
  • 31Browne
  • 35Hudson
  • 40Ebanks-Blake
Lee Probert

Match Stats

Home TeamSheff UtdAway TeamPreston
Shots on Target

Live Text

  1. Post update

    Match ends, Sheffield United 1, Preston North End 3.

  2. Full Time

    Second Half ends, Sheffield United 1, Preston North End 3.

  3. Post update

    Joe Garner (Preston North End) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

  4. Post update

    Foul by Robert Harris (Sheffield United).

  5. Post update

    Attempt saved. Jamie Murphy (Sheffield United) left footed shot from the left side of the box is saved in the centre of the goal.

  6. Post update

    Attempt missed. Jay McEveley (Sheffield United) left footed shot from outside the box is high and wide to the right.

  7. Substitution

    Substitution, Preston North End. John Welsh replaces Scott Laird.

  8. Substitution

    Substitution, Preston North End. Joe Garner replaces Kevin Davies.

  9. Post update

    Paul Gallagher (Preston North End) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

  10. Post update

    Foul by Louis Reed (Sheffield United).

  11. Substitution

    Substitution, Preston North End. Kyel Reid replaces Chris Humphrey.

  12. Substitution

    Substitution, Sheffield United. Diego De Girolamo replaces Michael Doyle.

  13. Post update

    Attempt missed. Paul Gallagher (Preston North End) right footed shot from outside the box misses to the right.

  14. Post update

    Attempt missed. Paul Gallagher (Preston North End) right footed shot from outside the box is too high.

  15. Post update

    Attempt missed. Chris Basham (Sheffield United) header from the centre of the box misses to the right.

  16. Post update

    Corner, Sheffield United. Conceded by Paul Huntington.

  17. Post update

    Attempt blocked. Chris Basham (Sheffield United) left footed shot from the centre of the box is blocked.

  18. Post update

    Foul by Josh Brownhill (Preston North End).

  19. Post update

    Jamal Campbell-Ryce (Sheffield United) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

  20. Goal!

    Goal! Sheffield United 1, Preston North End 3. Paul Gallagher (Preston North End) converts the penalty with a right footed shot to the bottom left corner.