Cardiff upset Middlesbrough to reach FA Cup semi-finals

March 10th, 2008 - 2:42 pm ICT by admin  

London, March 10 (DPA) Cardiff City continued the trend of upsets in the FA Cup as they produced a stunning 2-0 win at Middlesbrough Sunday to reach the semi-finals. West Bromwich Albion joined them in the last four after their 5-1 win at Bristol Rovers.

After the exit of Manchester United and Chelsea, goals from Peter Whittingham and Roger Johnson sealed a famous win for Cardiff over a hapless Middlesbrough side.

The Championship side were the better team throughout and fully deserved to join Portsmouth and Barnsley in the last four.

“We played some good football and defended when we had to - the win was thoroughly deserved and we performed fantastically,” Cardiff manager Dave Jones said.

“I don’t think Middlesbrough can have any complaints. We knew if we played to our potential we would have a chance and we got what we deserved.”

Middlesbrough manager Gareth Southgate did not try to offer any excuses for his side’s performance.

“I think we froze to be honest,” Southgate said. “I think we have to hold our hands up - Cardiff were better from start to finish.”

Cardiff’s financial problems have put their future in doubt - they face a trip to the High Court this week - and Jones said the win was doubly sweet given their situation.

“It is a great achievement for the club in light of what’s happened off the football pitch and I’m sure the chairman will be happy.”

Cardiff are in the last four for the first time since 1927, the year they won the trophy for the only time in their history, and Jones said he was itching to repeat the triumph.

“I get 1927 rammed down my throat and now we’ve got the chance to make our own piece of history,” Jones said.

“They are a great bunch of lads and all we can do is continue do the business on the pitch,” he said. “We were composed, did the right things and it is up there with the best performances since I’ve been here.”

The visitors were ahead inside nine minutes as a long throw from Tony Capaldi found its way to Whittingham, who produced some nifty footwork before curling a superb shot into the top corner.

Whittingham then turned provider as his free kick found Roger Johnson, who headed home the second on 21 minutes.

Middlesbrough were totally insipid and Cardiff could and probably should have won by more, but in the end they were more than happy to complete a deserved win.

At the Memorial Stadium, an Ishmael Miller hat trick helped West Brom reach the semi-finals as they thumped fellow Championship side Bristol Rovers 5-1.

The away side were gifted the lead early in the first half as Bristol goalkeeper Steve Phillips parried a weak Roman Bednar shot straight to James Morrison, who finished easily.

And just two minutes after West Brom had extended their lead through a powerful Miller strike, Rovers were given hope of a comeback as Danny Coles tapped in from close range after Craig Disley had flicked on a corner.

In the second half however, West Brom’s greater class and firepower eventually told as they eased out of sight through two further goals from Miller - who completed his hat-trick - and one for Kevin Phillips.

The draw for the semi-finals will be made Monday.

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