Friday, November 22, 2013

22 November 1971 - That's Right, The 588th Minute

On 22 November 1971, Alvechurch and Oxford City finally resolved the longest FA Cup tie in history after almost three weeks and six games.

They met in the fourth qualifying round, with the winner advancing to the First Round Proper. In the first game, played on 6 November, Alvechurch went up 2-0, but Oxford City rallied to draw 2-2. The rematch on the following Tuesday also ended as a draw, as did the third, fourth, and fifth rematches over the next two weeks (with scores of 1-1, 1-1, 0-0, and 0-0).

The sixth game, like the third through the fifth, was played at a neutral ground, this time at Villa Park. And Alvechurch finally got the edge, winning 1-0 with a goal from Bobby Hope in the 588th minute. All told, the tie lasted a record eleven hours.

Alvechurch's reward was a First Round meeting at Aldershot two days later, which the hosts won 4-2.

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