While Premier League big guns Chelsea, Manchester City, Manchester United and Arsenal survived their respective third-round clashes, Hull City, Queens Park Rangers and Newcastle were this weekend’s FA Cup casualties from England’s top flight. The Blues strolled to a 3-0 win against Watford, City came-from-behind to edge Sheffield Wednesday 2-1, United won 2-0 at Yeovil, and Arsenal once again ousted Hull in a battle of last season’s finalists, which also ended 2-0.
Prior to that, QPR on Sunday became the second Premier League team to fall in the third round after Newcastle’s 1-0 loss at Leicester City on Saturday, as Sheffield United, last season’s improbable semifinalist, won 3-0 at Loftus Road. "We know we can come and compete with top teams," Sheffield United first-team coach Chris Morgan said after the win. "It's great to have a run in the cup -- great for supporters and for the revenue of the club."
Elsewhere, Southampton will need a replay to get past Ipswich Town after the clubs drew 1-1 at St. Mary’s, Aston Villa required a late Christian Benteke strike to overcome Blackpool, 1-0, the same score by which Sunderland beat Leeds United, and Stoke needed some late heroics from Stephen Ireland to beat Wrexham, 3-1. Also on Sunday, Crystal Palace crushed Dover, 4-0, in the first match of the Alan Pardew era, while West Brom destroyed Gateshead, 7-0, in Tony Pulis’ first game in charge on Saturday.