THE HALF DECENT FOOTBALL MAGAZINE

FA Cup ~ Chelsea on high as they hit Spurs for five
Despite the controversy surrounding Chelsea's second goal at Wembley yesterday, it is hard to overlook the emphatic nature of their 5-1 victory. It is the second time in two seasons a team has scored five goals in an FA Cup semi-final, following Stoke's 5-0 win over Bolton last season. Before then you have to go back to 1970, when Chelsea beat Watford 5-1 at White Hart Lane on their way to winning the trophy. The first time a team scored five goals at this stage of the competition was in 1882, when Old Etonians beat Marlow 5-0 at Kennington Oval and Blackburn Rovers overcame The Wednesday 5-1 in a replay at Whalley Range.

Only three times has a team scored more than five goals in an FA Cup semi-final. Manchester City beat Aston Villa 6-1 at Leeds Road in 1934, Newcastle won 6-0 against Fulham at Anfield in 1908 and West Brom defeated Nottingham Forest 6-2 in a second replay at the Racecourse Ground in 1892.

Premier League ~ Wolves finally keep a clean sheet
Terry Connor's Wolves side remain adrift at the bottom of the Premier League, despite keeping their first clean sheet in 30 league games. The last time they stopped the opposition scoring in the Premier League was at Villa Park on August 27, when a goalless draw left them third in the league. The point against a Sunderland side who have improved since Martin O'Neill took charge represents one of the few positives in Connor's reign so far, ending a run of seven defeats in a row. Wolves remain eight points from safety with just four games to play and look like they will be in the Championship next season.

Championship ~ Late Portsmouth goals relegate Doncaster
One side Wolves will not be facing in the Championship next season is Doncaster Rovers, whose 4-3 defeat to Portsmouth consigned them to League One. Doncaster, who had Habib Beye sent off when they were 2-0 up, conceded twice in stoppage time, leaving their chairman, John Ryan, seething at the referee and his assistant: "I thought the officials today were an absolute disgrace. I will be speaking to the head of referees tomorrow. I thought it was a clear handball for the third goal and a clear handball for the fourth goal. The first penalty I thought was outside the box. I'm absolutely sickened to the core about the standard of refereeing."

League One ~ Title next target after Charlton secure promotion
A single Bradley Wright-Phillips goal against Carlisle was enough to seal promotion to the Championship for Charlton Athletic. The Addicks, who have been top of the table since September 17, took advantage of third-place Sheffield Wednesday's draw at Colchester United to end their three-year stay in League One. They are six points clear of second-place Sheffield United with three games to go. Charlton captain Johnnie Jackson has set his sights on winning League One: "To lead the club to promotion is just like a dream come true. If we can go on and win the league and get a winner's medal it would be fantastic." Looking back on the season, Jackson picked out the week they beat the two Sheffield clubs 1-0 as an important moment: "When we beat both of them there was a real sense of 'now we believe'."

League Two ~ McGee cringes as Bristol Rovers score seven
Bristol Rovers manager Mark McGee admitted he felt sorry for his opposite number as Bristol Rovers beat Burton Albion 7-1. "There comes a point where you think the game is won," he said, "but as a manager I do start cringing for the opposition manager because I have been in a difficult position like that myself and you don't wish it on anyone." The win was the biggest of McGee's career and bodes well for an improvement to their mid-table position next season. "As far as I am concerned, next season has started already," says McGee. "This is our preparation, our pre-season if you like. We have to try to get ourselves set up so we can start next season the way we have been finishing this one."

Conference ~ Fleetwood promoted to Football League for the first time
Fleetwood Town were promoted on Saturday despite playing on Friday night. They were held to a 2-2 draw by Lincoln City but were promoted when second-place Wrexham's game against Grimsby ended in the same scoreline the next day. Fleetwood, who were reformed in 1997, have not been beaten since losing 4-1 to Newport County on October 11 last year. Having already amassed 103 points, they need just one win from their remaining two games to set the record for the highest points total ever achieved in the Conference. The previous record of 105 points was set by Crawley last season. Tom Hocking

Comments (5)
Comment by Sixmartletsandaseagull 2012-04-16 14:26:36

Despite the (ultimately) emphatic nature of their 5-1 victory it is hard to overlook the controversy surrounding Chelsea's second goal at Wembley yesterday?

Comment by tone_burst 2012-04-16 17:12:15

As little time as i have for glory-hunting Judas-reincarnated ex-Leicester managers who piss off to join Wolves, i distinctly remember him having an "H" in his surname.

Comment by geobra 2012-04-16 19:00:36

Yet another Lancashire team in the league! Time we had one from Surrey! Woking??

Comment by Liffrok 2012-04-19 09:33:20

Aren't Fulham and Chelsea both part of Surrey, historically at least? Or would they be in Middlesex?

Comment by geobra 2012-04-20 13:28:03

They're both north of the Thames aren't they? So that would be Middlesex, when it existed.

I suppose that at a pinch you could call AFC Wimbledon and maybe Crystal Palace Surrey clubs, but really they are from Greater London. Nobody would say that West Ham or Leyton Orient are from Essex, would they?

Perhaps I should have written 'Time we had a club from non-metropolitan Surrey'.

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