FA Cup: Fleetwood hold Leicester, Coventry knock out Stoke

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Third-tier Fleetwood Town kicked off a hectic English FA Cup third round schedule by holding Premier League side Leicester City to a 0-0 draw at their Highbury Stadium on Saturday.

Leicester striker Jamie Vardy, who once played for Fleetwood, was not included in the Midlands club’s line-up, spending a chilly lunchtime watching from the stands.

A large crowd on the Lancashire coast had precious little to cheer with the defences dominating a dull game, although Fleetwood had the better chances.

Leicester, English Premier League champions in 2016, were restricted to half-chances and failed to have an attempt on target.

Fleetwood came closest to winning in stoppage time when Ashley Hunter’s deflected shot from 25 metres hit the post.

It came off the face of Leicester goalkeeper Eldin Jakupovic, then hit the upright again.

There were 25 FA Cup third-round ties on Saturday, including an all top-flight clash between leaders Manchester City and Burnley.

Holders Arsenal are at Nottingham Forest on Sunday.

Already, at the Ricoh Arena, Hughes has been sacked after fourth tier Coventry rolled back the years with a memorable 2-1 Cup result over Stoke City.

With Stoke in the relegation zone, it was reported this week that the club’s hierarchy had considered dismissing Hughes.

Coventry have fallen on hard times since winning the FA Cup in a classic 1987 final against Tottenham.

They are currently in League Two – their first time at that level since the 1950s – after a spell having to play their home matches in Northampton due to a stadium row.

Jordan Willis put the underdogs ahead in the 24th minute with his first goal in a year.

Willis however conceded a 52nd minute penalty kick with a foul on Ramadan Sobhi and Charlie Adam stepped up to equalise.

But Coventry right-back Jack Grimmer weaved his way through Stoke’s defence and side-footed past Jack Butland in the 67th minute.

At Dean Court, Bournemouth manager Eddie Howe made eight changes as he prioritised English Premier League survival.

It needed a second half revival from his understudies to rescue a 2-2 draw against Wigan.

Northern Ireland forward Will Grigg gave Wigan a fourth minute lead from close-range.

There was worse to come for Howe in the 29th minute when Emerson Hyndman’s own goal doubled the visitors’ lead.

Yet Lys Mousset reduced the deficit for Bournemouth in the 55th minute.

The League One leaders, who won the FA Cup in 2013, were denied a surprise win by Steve Cook’s goal two minutes into stoppage-time.

Newcastle had been tipped as potential upset victims, but they swept away fourth tier leaders Luton with a 3-1 win at St James’ Park.

Rafael Benitez’s side ran riot in the first half as Ayoze Perez netted in the 30th and 36th minutes before Jonjo Shelvey struck after 39 minutes.

West Bromwich Albion won for the first time in 21 games in all competitions.

A 2-0 win at fourth tier Exeter gave manager Alan Pardew his first victory since replacing the sacked Tony Pulis.

Salomon Rondon’s long-range drive put Albion ahead in the second minute and Jay Rodriguez added the second goal in the 25th minute.

Watford avoided more cup misery against giant-killers Bristol City with a 3-0 win at Vicarage Road.

Second tier Bristol face Manchester City in the League Cup semi-finals next week after stunning Manchester United in the last eight.

City had also won at Vicarage Road in the League Cup this season, but Watford avoided another embarrassing loss thanks to goals from Andre Carrillo, Troy Deeney and Etienne Capoue.

Southampton won 1-0 at Fulham, Huddersfield beat Bolton 2-1, Swansea drew 0-0 at Wolves and Leicester were held to a 0-0 draw at third tier Fleetwood.

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