FA Cup: 5 Giant-Killing Acts in 4th Round, Which Was Most Impressive? (VIDEO)

Karl Matchett@@karlmatchettFeatured ColumnistJanuary 27, 2013

NORWICH, ENGLAND - JANUARY 26:   Luton Town players celebrate at the final whistle during the FA Cup with Budweiser fourth round match between Norwich City and Luton Town at Carrow Road on January 26, 2013 in Norwich, England.  (Photo by Jan Kruger/Getty Images)
Jan Kruger/Getty Images

The English FA Cup fourth round produced some real shock results this year, as the lower-league sides went to town somewhat on their more illustrious Premier League rivals.

No less than five top-flight teams made an exit at this stage to clubs from divisions lower in the league pyramid, with another team (Chelsea) requiring a replay after only managing a 2-2 draw against League One side Brentford.

Five shocks then, but which one was the most impressive?


Not Aston Villa's Best Week Ever

Fresh from cup humiliation against lower-league opposition on Tuesday, Aston Villa returned to action with cup humiliation against lower-league opposition on Friday.

Having lost out on aggregate to League Two side Bradford City in the Capital One Cup semifinal, Villa put in another subpar performance against Millwall in the FA Cup.

The Lions are placed ninth in the Championship table, and their home ground is a notoriously tough place to go for the bigger sides, but it was still a shock result—and, as it turned out, an indication of what was to come for the rest of the fourth-round weekend.


Norwich City Make History

Being beaten by a lower-league club is one thing, but being beaten by a non-league team?

Since the inception of the Premier League in 1992, no top-flight club had ever been beaten in the FA Cup by a side below the fourth tier of English football. The last to suffer such a fate was Coventry City, knocked out by Sutton United in 1989.

The Canaries toppled that particular record by losing at home to Blue Square Premier League side Luton Town, by a single goal to nil.

Scott Rendell scored with 80 minutes on the clock to write his name into the record books.


Queens Park Rangers Made to Suffer

At least Norwich only lost 1-0.

Bottom of the Premier League side QPR were absolutely battered by League One outfit MK Dons, who at one stage of the game led by 4-0. Rangers pulled two back in the final 10 minutes to make the scoreline not look like a complete slaughtering, but in truth they were roundly beaten by the team two leagues below them.

If things don't pick up in the league, there will be only one division between them next term.

It's been 16 years now since QPR managed to progress past the fourth round of the FA Cup.


Spurs Beaten by Leeds

Tottenham had been some people's favourite for cup glory this year, with an attack-minded team and an impressive spell of form in the Premier League enough to lift them into the top four once again.

Leeds United proved to have the beating of them, though, giving themselves a 2-0 lead before Spurs pulled a goal back.

The Yorkshire side are currently 11th in the Championship, so certainly not from the lower reaches of the pyramid, but Spurs are just four points off third place in the Premiership—so they would certainly have been expected to dispatch of their opponents.


Last Year's Beaten Finalists, This Year Merely Beaten

Liverpool were the last Premier League side to suffer a depressing fate in the fourth round of the FA Cup—barring Brentford overcoming Chelsea in the replay, of course.

The Reds made it all the way to Wembley last term, losing to Chelsea, but this season have been knocked out by League One side Oldham Athletic—whom they beat 5-1 a little over a year ago in the third round.

Brendan Rodgers is overseeing plenty of changes at the club, but one area he will have hoped to have continuity in was cup success; Liverpool reached both finals last year, winning one. This season, they have been eliminated from both League and FA Cups in the second knockout match.

It was Liverpool's first defeat at Oldham since 1992-93 season—when the Latics were still a top-flight team. This season they are battling relegation from League One to League Two.