Blackburn sink nine-man Swansea in FA Cup

Rudy Gestede and Craig Conway scored the decisive goals as second-tier Blackburn Rovers dumped nine-man Swansea City out of the FA Cup with a 3-1 win on Saturday.

Visitors Swansea had Kyle Bartley sent off in the sixth minute for impeding Josh King, only for them to take the lead in the 21st minute when Gylfi Sigurdsson found the top-left corner from 30 yards.

But Chris Taylor hooked in an equaliser two minutes later before substitute Gestede and Conway struck in the second half, the latter finding the net with a shot that squirmed beneath Swansea goalkeeper Lukasz Fabianski.

Both Gestede and Conway used to play for Swansea’s fierce local rivals Cardiff City, and Swansea’s misery was compounded in stoppage time when Sigurdsson saw red for an ugly challenge from behind on Taylor.

Later on Saturday, Premier League leaders Chelsea welcome third-tier Bradford City to Stamford Bridge, while Manchester City host second-tier Middlesbrough.

Liverpool face a reunion with former striker Emile Heskey as Championship club Bolton Wanderers visit Anfield.

In the day’s two all-Premier League ties, Southampton entertain Palace and Leicester City visit Tottenham Hotspur.

Holders Arsenal continue their defence of the trophy at second-division Brighton and Hove Albion on Sunday.

Manchester United flirted with ridicule in the first tie of the round on Friday when they were taken to a replay by fourth-tier minnows Cambridge United following a 0-0 draw at the Abbey Stadium.

Cambridge head coach Richard Money has defended the quality of his club’s playing surface after it was criticised by United manager Louis van Gaal.

“We don’t have the money to spend on the pitch to make it as it is at Old Trafford or anywhere else,” he told BBC Radio 5 Live.

“The groundsman did a fantastic job to keep it in the condition it was. Yes, it broke up a little bit, but it’s the same for both teams, I have to say that.”


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