FA Cup's top giant-killers? Here's what the numbers say
AFC Wimbledon, Bristol City, Derby County, Gillingham, Millwall, Newport County, Oldham Athletic.
Already this season, seven clubs from outside the Premier League have knocked clubs from England's highest league out of the FA Cup.
But which teams have been the most prolific giant-killers in FA Cup history?
Using the database from sports analysts Gracenote and a definition of a giant-killing as knocking out a top-flight team when not in the top flight, we discovered the answer ahead of the fifth round commencing on Friday.
Most frequent giant-killers?
The record for the club with the most frequent FA Cup giant-killings was actually equalled in this year's FA Cup fourth round when Millwall won 3-2 against Everton taking their tally to 25 scalps and equalling Southampton's record.
Millwall have been a prolific giant-killer in the past seven seasons of the FA Cup, facing seven Premier League clubs and knocking five of them out and victory this weekend against League One bottom club AFC Wimbledon will give Millwall their third FA Cup quarter-final in the past seven years.
The Lions would probably have preferred a bigger fish than AFC Wimbledon in this year's fifth round though.
Millwall's record against teams playing in a lower division is somewhat less impressive. Southend United (2014), Bradford City (2015) and Rochdale (2018) have all knocked the south Londoners out of the competition in the past seven seasons.
|Clubs with the most giant-killings in the FA Cup (Source: Gracenote)|
|Club||Total giant-killings||Pre-WWII||Post WWII||Last giant-killing|
|Southampton||25||17||8||2011 v Blackpool|
|Millwall||25||11||14||2019 v Everton|
|Birmingham City||21||2||19||2012 v Wolves|
|West Ham United||20||7||13||2005 v Norwich City|
|Fulham||20||10||10||2017 v Hull City|
|Sheffield United||20||4||16||2015 v Queens Park Rangers|
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League Two clubs rarely make it this far
|Fourth tier clubs knocking out most teams from the top two divisions (Source: Gracenote)|
|Club||Teams they have knocked out||Last victim|
|Peterborough United||5||Colchester United 2008|
|Newport County||5||Middlesbrough 2019|
|Aldershot Town||4||Oxford United 1987|
|Scunthorpe United||4||Burnley 2001|
|York City||4||Grimsby Town 2002|
The other big giant-killing story of this season is Newport County's run to the fifth round.
Only seven teams from the fourth tier of English football have made it this far in the FA Cup in the 27 years since the Premier League began in 1992-93. Newport are the latest to achieve this but have had to do it the hard way by eliminating Premier League club Leicester City and Championship side Middlesbrough.
This makes Newport only the fifth club from the fourth tier to knock out two teams from the top two divisions in an FA Cup season - the Welsh club are preceded by Southport (1966), Peterborough United (1986), Rochdale (2003) and Crawley Town (2012).
Middlesbrough became the fifth club from England's top two divisions to be knocked out by a Newport County team playing in the fourth tier and Newport thereby joined Peterborough United as League Two teams with the most FA Cup successes against clubs from the top two English leagues.
Only four clubs have ever reached the sixth round while playing in the fourth tier. Cambridge United in 1990 are the most recent, with Oxford United (1964), Colchester United (1971) and Bradford City (1976) the others.
|Fourth-tier clubs in the FA Cup fifth round - Premier League era (Source: Gracenote)|
|Club||Year in the fifth round||Opponent||Result|
|Newport County||2019||Manchester City||TBD|
|Coventry City||2018||Brighton||Lost 1-3|
|Crawley Town||2012||Stoke City||Lost 0-2|
|Notts County||2010||Fulham||Lost 0-4|
|Swansea City||2004||Tranmere Rovers||Lost 1-2|
|Cheltenham Town||2002||West Bromwich Albion||Lost 0-1|
Premier League clubs make up less than half of last 16
Only seven Premier League teams have made it to the fifth round of this season's FA Cup, the lowest number for six years.
The record low for the Premier League era is six in 2007-08 when Portsmouth and Cardiff City went on to meet in the only final since 1984 not to feature a team from the current Premier League's 'big six' - Arsenal, Chelsea, Liverpool, Manchester City, Manchester United and Tottenham.
This season is the 13th since the current FA Cup format began in 1925-26 in which fewer than half of the fifth round clubs are from the top flight, with the lowest number of top-flight clubs reaching this stage five in 1958.
In that year, only Bolton Wanderers, Manchester United, Sheffield Wednesday, West Bromwich Albion and Wolves represented England's top division in the fifth round.
Bolton Wanderers and Manchester United reached the final with Bolton winning 2-0, a little over three months after United had lost much of their team in the Munich air disaster.
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