The FA Cup
DoncasterDoncaster Rovers1StokeStoke City2

Doncaster Rovers 1-2 Stoke City

By James GheerbrantBBC Sport

Stoke secured their place in the FA Cup fourth round for the seventh straight year as goals from Peter Crouch and Jonathan Walters saw off Doncaster.

The visitors took the lead when Crouch - one of nine changes - flicked in Joselu's teasing cross.

Doncaster replied when Luke McCullough surged out of defence and rolled the ball to Nathan Tyson to tap home.

But the League One side were denied a lucrative replay by Walters' fine 25-yard strike.

Andy Butler hit the bar with a looping header but Darren Ferguson's side could not find an equaliser to take them into the fourth-round draw.

Stoke's striking stand-ins prove their worth

Having played for much of the Premier League season so far with no out-and-out centre forwards in their XI (with Bojan deployed as a false nine), Mark Hughes named a second-string line-up containing no fewer than four strikers: Crouch, Joselu, Walters and Mame Biram Diouf.

And it took just 15 minutes for two of the forwards to combine, with Joselu curling in a fine ball from the right and Crouch bursting between the centre-backs to apply a clever finish.

Crouch - the only player on the pitch to have won the cup, with Liverpool in 2006 - should have made it two but somehow cleared the bar from two yards when Thorsten Stuckmann's save fell to him.

But Stuckmann's luck ran out when his poor goal-kick fell to Walters, whose sweet strike flew into the bottom corner.

Tyson strikes, but no knockout punch for Donny

Doncaster - managed by Hughes's room-mate from his Manchester United playing days, Darren Ferguson - were seeking a place in the fourth round for the first time since 2010, and Tyson's sixth goal of the season raised hopes of an upset.

McCullough beat two players in a superb run and the striker finished at the second attempt after debutant goalkeeper Jakob Haugaard saved his initial shot.

Donny had plenty of chances to grab a late equaliser, but they could not find the target.

Tyson hooked over from five yards before Butler headed over the top from even closer range in stoppage time.

What they said

Doncaster manager Darren Ferguson: "I thought our performance was good. We were really unlucky not to get something out of that game.

"We worked very hard and if we play like that every week we will win games. We've had a couple of clear chances at the end with Nathan Tyson and Andy Butler, but in the cups you don't get a second chance and you have to take them.

"We should have had a penalty at 1-1 and Wollscheid could have been sent off. We felt the little decisions didn't go our way."

Stoke manager Mark Hughes: "It was a good cup tie. Doncaster played well with a good quality of ball into our box, and we had to defend manfully at times.

"It was two great goals that won us the tie and we're delighted with that. We made a lot of changes and we weren't as fluent as we know we can be, but the guys that came in did well. A number of them haven't had games for a number of weeks so I was really pleased with what they put up today."



Formation 5-3-2

  • 12Stuckmann
  • 38Alcock
  • 4McCullough
  • 6Butler
  • 20Taylor-SinclairSubstituted forMainat 76'minutes
  • 3Evina
  • 29MiddletonSubstituted forMackenzieat 89'minutes
  • 18KeeganSubstituted forChaplowat 77'minutes
  • 22GrantBooked at 84mins
  • 14TysonBooked at 32mins
  • 11Williams


  • 2Lund
  • 8Chaplow
  • 9Main
  • 17Mackenzie
  • 23Marosi
  • 32Whitehouse
  • 34Davies


Formation 4-4-1-1

  • 29Haugaard
  • 2BardsleySubstituted forJohnsonat 61'minutes
  • 17Shawcross
  • 26WollscheidBooked at 31mins
  • 12Wilson
  • 19WaltersBooked at 62mins
  • 15Van GinkelBooked at 39mins
  • 16AdamSubstituted forSidwellat 87'minutes
  • 18Diouf
  • 11Joselu
  • 25CrouchSubstituted forWhelanat 66'minutes


  • 1Butland
  • 6Whelan
  • 8Johnson
  • 9Odemwingie
  • 21Sidwell
  • 23Teixeira
  • 34Shenton
Keith Stroud

Match Stats

Home TeamDoncasterAway TeamStoke
Shots on Target

Live Text

  1. Post update

    Match ends, Doncaster Rovers 1, Stoke City 2.

  2. Full Time

    Second Half ends, Doncaster Rovers 1, Stoke City 2.

  3. Post update

    Corner, Doncaster Rovers. Conceded by Glen Johnson.

  4. Post update

    Attempt missed. Andy Butler (Doncaster Rovers) header from very close range is just a bit too high. Assisted by Curtis Main with a cross.

  5. Post update

    Delay over. They are ready to continue.

  6. Post update

    Delay in match Joselu (Stoke City) because of an injury.

  7. Post update

    Attempt missed. Nathan Tyson (Doncaster Rovers) right footed shot from very close range is too high. Assisted by Gary Mackenzie with a headed pass.

  8. Post update

    Attempt saved. Nathan Tyson (Doncaster Rovers) left footed shot from the left side of the box is saved in the centre of the goal. Assisted by Curtis Main.

  9. Substitution

    Substitution, Doncaster Rovers. Gary Mackenzie replaces Harry Middleton.

  10. Post update

    Marco Van Ginkel (Stoke City) wins a free kick on the left wing.

  11. Post update

    Foul by Richard Chaplow (Doncaster Rovers).

  12. Substitution

    Substitution, Stoke City. Steve Sidwell replaces Charlie Adam.

  13. Post update

    Attempt saved. Curtis Main (Doncaster Rovers) left footed shot from outside the box is saved in the top centre of the goal. Assisted by Harry Middleton.

  14. Booking

    Conor Grant (Doncaster Rovers) is shown the yellow card.

  15. Post update

    Foul by Mame Biram Diouf (Stoke City).

  16. Post update

    Craig Alcock (Doncaster Rovers) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

  17. Post update

    Attempt saved. Andy Williams (Doncaster Rovers) header from the centre of the box is saved in the top centre of the goal. Assisted by Richard Chaplow with a cross.

  18. Post update

    Foul by Marc Wilson (Stoke City).

  19. Post update

    Conor Grant (Doncaster Rovers) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

  20. Post update

    Attempt missed. Marco Van Ginkel (Stoke City) right footed shot from outside the box misses to the left. Assisted by Jonathan Walters.