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The Giant Killers

Every F A cup slaying since 1888


The name Crystal Palace holds a special place in FA cup history. A team representing the ground staff as the Victorian pleasure park entered the very first FA cup in 1871 and reached the semi finals in the amateur era but it was the period from 1895-1914 for which the area of London is most famed. During that time the huge natural bowl at the lowest point of the pleasure park, beneath Prince Albert's visionary glass palace, which had hosted the 1851 Great Exhibition was home to the showpiece of the English football season, the cup final. In 1905 it was also the inspiration of a new generation of ground keepers to form a new professional team to carry the name. The second Crystal Palace started out in the second division of the Southern League in 1905 before being part of the en bloc election of almost the entire Southern League first division in1920. Palace's start in the League was a good one, winning the new division at the first attempt and stepping up to the second tier. By then the team had been forced to vacate the famous old stadum, which had also staged its last cup final and would eventually be bulldozed for the National Sports centre in the early 1960s. Palace had moved up the road, settling at Selhurst Park where, in 1969 they finally hit the big time. The years since have seen Palace move between the top three tiers of English Football, though their last game in the old division three was over thirty years ago and their years among the elite, of which the last was 2005 are far outnumbered by their time in the second tier. Despite this Palace did have one big day out at Wembley in 1990 when Ian Wright inspired the team into an extra time lead over Manchester United before being held and eventually beaten in the replay. With less than twenty years of top flight football under their belt its hardly surprising that Palace's major moments outside that cup final have been as a giant killer rather than giant slain. Their second season in existance {1907} saw them send a shock wave around the football world when they went to title chasing Newcastle and won in a result that arguably remained the biggest upset in cup history until the 1970s. While later generations would recall huge upsets of Manchester City {1921} and Leeds United {1976}.

All Time Greats


1-0 at Newcastle United

First round: 12th January 1907

Attendance: 28,000

Scorer: Horace Astley

Ranked at the time: 1

Today: Remains in the top 20


2-0 vs Manchester City

First round: Saturday January 8th 1921


Scorers: Ben Bateman, Bertie Menlove

Ranked at the time:6

Today: inside the top 50

Team: 1:Jack Anderson, 2:Jack Little:, 3:Ernie Rhodes, 4:Joey Jones, 5:Phil Bates, 6:Albert Feebery, 7:Ben Bateman, 8:John Wibley, 9:Jack Connor, 10:Bertie Menlove, 11:Alan Wood


Magic Moments


6-0 @ Everton

Attendance: 41,000

Scorers: John Wibley, Bertie Menlove {2}, Jack Connor {2}, Alan Wood

Ranked at the time: 37

Today: outside the top 100

Team: 1:Jack Alderson, 2:Jack Little, 3:Ernie Rhodes, 4:Bobby McCracken, 5:Joey Jones, 6:Albert Feebery or Harry Dreyer, 7:Ben Bateman, 8:Jack Connor, 9:Bertie Menlove, 10: Alan Wood, 11: John Wibley {Manager-Edmund Goodman}

First round: Saturday January 7th 1922


2-0 vs Tottenham Hotspur

First round: Saturday January 12th 1924

Attendance: 17,000

Scorer: Billy Morgan

Ranked at the time:111

Team: 1:Jack Alderson, 2:Jack Little, 3:, 4:Roy McCracken, 5:Dick Cracknell, 6:?, 7:Bert Harry, 8:?, 9:Frank Hoddinott, 10:Billy Morgan, 11:Bill Hand


2-1 vs Notts County

Second round, third replay: Monday February 18th 1924

Villa Park, Birmingham


Scorers: Frank Hoddinott, Bill Hand

Ranked at the time:155

Team: 1:Jack Alderson, 2:Jack Little, 3:, 4:Bobby McCracken, 5:Dick Cracknell, 6:?, 7:Bert Harry, 8:?, 9:Frank Hoddinott, 10:Billy Morgan, 11:Bill Hand


3-1 vs Wolverhampton Wanderers

Fourth round replay: Tuesday 2nd February 2010

Attendance: 10,282

Scorers: Danny Butterfield {hat-trick}

Ranked at the time: 395

Team: 1:Julian Speroni, 2:Nathanial Clyne, 3:Clint Hill, 17:Matthew Lawrence, 20:Danny Butterfield [replaced by 21:Kieran Djilali 88], 24:Claude Davis, 4:Shaun Derry, 7:Darren Ambrose, 8:Neil Danns, 10:Nick Carle [replaced by 28:James Comley 83], 19:Alan lee [replaced by 18:Calvin Andrew 74]