2006 FA Cup Final

The 2006 FA Cup Final was a football match played between Liverpool and West Ham United on 13 May 2006 at the Millennium Stadium, Cardiff. It was the final match of the 2005–06 FA Cup, the 125th season of the world's oldest football knockout competition, the FA Cup. Liverpool were participating in their 13th final, they had previously won six and lost six. West Ham were appearing in their fifth final, they had previously won three and lost once. This was the last final to be held at the Millennium Stadium while Wembley Stadium was rebuilt. Liverpool had won the first final to be held at the Millennium Stadium in 2001, when they beat Arsenal 2–1.[2] The match has been called The Gerrard Final and is widely regarded as one of the greatest cup finals in the history of the competition.

As both teams were in the highest tier of English football, the Premier League, they entered the competition in the third round. Matches up to the semi-final were contested on a one-off basis, with a replay taking place if the match ended in a draw. Liverpool's matches varied from close affairs to comfortable victories. They beat Manchester United 1–0 in the fifth round, while they won 7–0 against Birmingham City in the sixth round. The majority of West Ham's matches were close, with their only match to be decided by more than one goal being their 4–2 victory against Blackburn Rovers in the fourth round.

Watched by a crowd of 71,140, West Ham took the lead in the first half when Liverpool defender Jamie Carragher scored an own goal, and striker Dean Ashton scored a few minutes later to make it 2–0 to West Ham. Liverpool scored, courtesy of Djibril Cissé, to make the score 2–1 at half time. They equalised not long after the restart via a Steven Gerrard goal. However, ten minutes later West Ham defender Paul Konchesky gave his team a 3–2 lead. With the match in injury time, Gerrard equalised from distance to make the score 3–3 and force the game into extra time. No further goals were scored in extra time meaning the match was to be decided by a penalty shoot-out. West Ham missed three of their four penalties while Liverpool converted three of four to win the shoot-out 3–1.

The victory meant Liverpool won the FA Cup for the seventh time. They later played against league champions Chelsea in the 2006 FA Community Shield. Given Liverpool had already qualified for Europe via their league position, their UEFA Cup spot was awarded to runners-up West Ham.

2006 FA Cup Final
2006 FA Cup Final Programme
Match programme cover
Event2005–06 FA Cup
Liverpool West Ham United
3 3
After extra time
Liverpool won 3–1 on penalties
Date13 May 2006
VenueMillennium Stadium, Cardiff
Man of the MatchSteven Gerrard (Liverpool)[1]
RefereeAlan Wiley (Staffordshire)
Attendance71,140

Route to the final

Liverpool

Round Opponents Score
3rd Luton Town (a) 5–3
4th Portsmouth (a) 2–1
5th Manchester United (h) 1–0
6th Birmingham City (a) 7–0
SF Chelsea (n) 2–1

Liverpool entered the competition in the third round, as one of the twenty teams from the Premier League. They were drawn against Football League Championship side Luton Town, at Luton's home ground Kenilworth Road. Despite trailing 3–1 at the interval, four goals in the second half, including one from behind the halfway line by Xabi Alonso, meant Liverpool recovered to win the match 5–3 and progress to the fourth round.[3] There, they were drawn against fellow top division club Porstmouth. The match held at Portsmouth's ground, Fratton Park, saw Liverpool take the lead in the first half when captain Steven Gerrard scored a penalty following a handball by Portsmouth defender Dejan Stefanović, and John Arne Riise scored again before half time to make it 2–0. Portsmouth got a goal back through midfielder Sean Davis in the second half, but no more goals were scored and Liverpool won 2–1 to go through to the fifth round.[4]

Fellow Premier League team Manchester United were the opposition in the fifth round. With the match held at Liverpool's home ground Anfield, they won 1–0, courtesy of a Peter Crouch goal in the 19th minute. This was the first time in 85 years that Liverpool had defeated United in the FA Cup.[5] Liverpool were drawn against another Premier League team, Birmingham City in the sixth round. Liverpool took the lead in the match held at Birmingham's home ground St Andrew's in the first minute when defender Sami Hyypiä headed in, and two more goals in the first half from Crouch saw Liverpool finish the first half with a 3–0 lead. Four more goals in the second half from Fernando Morientes, Riise, Djibril Cissé and an own goal from Birmingham defender Olivier Tébily meant Liverpool won 7–0 to progress to the semi-final.[6]

Chelsea, also of the Premier League, were the opposition in the semi-final. The match was held at a neutral venue Old Trafford, the home ground of Manchester United. Liverpool took the lead in the first half. Chelsea defender John Terry committed a foul on Luis García, which resulted in a Liverpool free kick, from which Riise scored. They extended their lead soon after the start of the second half, when a goal by García from 20 yards (18 m), after he received the ball from a William Gallas header, gave them a 2–0 lead. Chelsea scored late in the half through striker Didier Drogba, but they were unable to achieve an equaliser and Liverpool won the match 2–1 to progress to the final.[7]

West Ham United

Round Opponents Score
3rd Norwich City (a) 2–1
4th Blackburn Rovers (h) 4–2
5th Bolton Wanderers (a) 0–0
Bolton Wanderers (h) 2–1 (aet)
6th Manchester City (a) 2–1
SF Middlesbrough (n) 1–0
Middlesbrough West Ham FA Cup semi-final 2006
The Middlesbrough and West Ham United teams line-up before their semi-final match.

West Ham entered the competition in the third round, where they were drawn against Championship team Norwich City. Before the game Norwich's top scorer, Dean Ashton, was withdrawn from their squad amid speculation that he was about to be sold. Although the sale was denied by manager Nigel Worthington, Ashton joined West Ham soon after for £7.2 million.[8][9] The match played at Norwich's home ground, Carrow Road, saw West Ham take the lead in the sixth minute through midfielder Hayden Mullins, and double it in the second half from striker Bobby Zamora. Norwich found a consolation with a Paul McVeigh penalty, but they lost 2–1 and West Ham progressed to the fourth round.[10] Fellow Premier League team Blackburn Rovers were the opposition in the fourth round. West Ham went a goal down in the first minute when David Bentley scored, but they subsequently scored four goals from Teddy Sheringham, Matthew Etherington, Bobby Zamora and an own goal from Zurab Khizanishvili to win the match 4–2 and go through to the fifth round.[11]

West Ham were again drawn against Premier League opposition in the fifth round, facing Bolton Wanderers away at the Reebok Stadium. It ended in a 0–0 draw, necessitating a replay.[12] A Jussi Jääskeläinen own goal in the 10th minute gave West Ham the lead in the replay at their home ground Upton Park. Bolton equalised through striker Kevin Davies and with the score 1–1 at full time the match went to extra time. A goal from striker Marlon Harewood in the 96th minute gave West Ham a 2–1 victory and meant they progressed to the sixth round.[13] Premier League team Manchester City were the opposition in the sixth round, and West Ham went ahead in the 41st minute when striker Dean Ashton scored. They extended their lead, in the match held at City's ground, the City of Manchester Stadium, in the 69th minute with Ashton's second of the match. A goal from Kiki Musampa in the 85th minute for City was not enough to prevent West Ham and they won 2–1 to go through to the semi-final.[14]

Middlesbrough, also from the Premier League, were the opposition in the semi-final at the neutral venue of Villa Park in Birmingham. Before the game both players and supporters paused to remember the life of West Ham's recently deceased former manager, John Lyall.[15] The first half saw Middlesbrough dominate, but they were unable to convert any of their chances into goals. They also lost goalkeeper Mark Schwarzer to injury. A long pass by defender Anton Ferdinand was headed down by Ashton to Harewood, whose goal ensured a 1–0 victory for West Ham and a place in the final.[15]

Background

2006FACupFinal
The Liverpool and West Ham players lining up before the start of the match.

The match was Liverpool's 13th appearance in the final. They had won on six occasions (1965, 1974, 1986, 1989, 1992, 2001) and lost six times (1914, 1950, 1971, 1977, 1988, 1996). West Ham were appearing in their fifth final, they had previously won three (1964, 1975, 1980) and lost once in the 1923 FA Cup Final. Liverpool had won both the meetings between the teams in the Premier League during the season. A 2–0 home victory at the end of October,[16] was followed by a 2–1 win at the end of April. The latter match saw Liverpool midfielder Luis García and West Ham defender Hayden Mullins sent off, which meant they would both be suspended for the final.[17]

A week before the final, Liverpool played Portsmouth in the 2005–06 Premier League – it was their last match before the final, and they won 3–1. The win was Liverpool's ninth straight in the competition and meant they finished the season in third place. One area of concern was the fitness of midfielder Xabi Alonso, who injured his ankle in the match and was a doubt for the final.[18] They were also without striker Robbie Fowler, who was cup-tied after playing for Manchester City earlier in the competition. Captain Steven Gerrard was determined not to let complacency affect Liverpool; "We have beaten fantastic sides like Manchester United and Chelsea to get to the final, but it is always on your mind that after going on such a successful run you might not get over that last hurdle."[19]

West Ham's final game before the final was against Tottenham Hotspur in the Premier League, and a 2–1 win meant they finished the season in ninth place.[20] West Ham also had injury concerns ahead of the final, with midfielder Matthew Etherington and striker Dean Ashton both doubts to be fit for the match. However, manager Alan Pardew was optimistic they would be available for selection stating: "You expect everyone to put their life on the line for the final." Pardew was also optimistic about his teams chances in the final, despite them being considered as the underdogs: We're up against a technical team who are better than us, Liverpool have got more experience and more international players, too. But everyone also knows that we attack teams and that we've got a big punch."[19]

The match was originally scheduled to be played on 20 May. However, England manager Sven-Göran Eriksson wanted a four-week break before the start of the 2006 FIFA World Cup, so that if any England players were involved (Liverpool's Steven Gerrard, Jamie Carragher and Peter Crouch all later made his squad) would get a decent rest before the tournament.[21] The final was scheduled to be held at Wembley Stadium, however the stadium had fallen behind in its rebuild and would not be completed in time for the final.[22] The final would instead be played at the Millennium Stadium in Cardiff, where it had been held since 2001.[23] Mike Dean was originally appointed to referee the final, but questions about his impartiality were raised as he resided close to Liverpool. He was replaced by Alan Wiley.[24]

In the week before the Final, a block of 1,600 tickets in the Liverpool supporters' seating area was stolen in the postal system.[25] The stadium authorities refused to reissue the tickets on crowd safety grounds, and threatened to eject anyone found sitting in the block from the stadium and possibly prosecute them for receiving stolen goods.[26] Liverpool F.C. arranged for most of the affected fans to receive tickets from an allocation that had been held back for a lottery among their supporters. The day after the final, South Wales Police seized 100 stolen tickets. Three people were arrested after 15 forged tickets were found ahead of the match.[27]

Match

Pre-match

Michael Ball sang the national anthem, "God Save the Queen", on the pitch before the game, with Lesley Garrett singing the traditional cup final hymn, "Abide with Me".[28] Before the match, both teams received a boost as Ashton and Etherington for West Ham and Alonso for Liverpool were deemed fit enough to start the final.

First half

2006 FA Cup Final Millennium Stadium
Banners of the two teams were hung from inflatable balloons before the match.

West Ham kicked the match off, as both teams lined up in a 4–4–2 formation.[29] West Ham committed the first foul of the match in the first minute as Paul Konchesky brought down Steven Gerrard, but Liverpool were unable to capitalise on the resulting free kick. A few minutes later, West Ham midfielder Yossi Benayoun advanced down the right hand side of the pitch and passed the ball into the penalty area, but Liverpool defender Sami Hyypiä was able to intercept the ball before Ashton or Harewood received it. Harewood had the first shot on goal for West Ham in the 12th minute, but it was deflected out for a corner.[29]

Liverpool's first opportunity came a minute later, after West Ham midfielder Carl Fletcher conceded a free kick for a foul on Gerrard. However, the resulting free kick was hit into the wall of players in front of the West Ham penalty area.[30] A few minutes later, West Ham scored the first goal of the match; Liverpool midfielder Xabi Alonso gave the ball away to Benayoun, who played it inside to Ashton. Ashton then played a through-ball to Lionel Scaloni on the right flank, before the Argentine's low cross was put into his own goal by Liverpool defender Jamie Carragher to give West Ham a 1–0 lead.[29] Seven minutes later, West Ham extended their lead, when Liverpool goalkeeper Pepe Reina fumbled a shot from Etherington into the path of Ashton, who squeezed the rebound under Reina into the far corner to make it 2–0.[30] Liverpool looked to have reduced the defect in the 30th minute, but Peter Crouch's shot from a Gerrard free kick was disallowed as Crouch was offside.[29]

However, Liverpool did score from their next attack. Gerrard played a ball into the West Ham penalty area, which went over the head of defender Scaloni and was met by striker Djibril Cissé, who scored to make it 2–1.[30] Ashton came close to extending West Ham's lead in the 37th minute, but his effort went wide of the post after beating goalkeeper Reina. The last chance of the half came in the 44th minute when Liverpool defender Steve Finnan sliced a clearance straight to striker Harewood, however his shot went out for a throw-in.[29]

Second half

Supporters of Liverpool and West Ham during the game.

Liverpool supporters 2006 FA Cup final
West Ham fans before 2006 FA Cup Final

Liverpool got the second half under way, but it was West Ham who had the first attack of the half. Etherington advanced down the right hand side of the pitch and passed to Harewood, whose shot was saved by Reina, who also saved a subsequent shot from Benayoun.[30] Liverpool had a chance immediately afterwards as Cissé passed to Alonso, but his shot was blocked and went out for a corner. A minute later, Liverpool made the first substitution of the match, as the injured Harry Kewell was replaced by Fernando Morientes.[29] Liverpool equalised in the 54th minute, when Gerrard volleyed home a knock-down header from Crouch.[30] The first yellow card of the match went to Ashton after he fouled Finnan in the 60th minute. Three minutes later, Carragher also received a yellow card for a foul on Ashton.[30]

A minute later, West Ham went ahead again; defender Paul Konchesky received the ball on the left flank, and played a ball into the Liverpool penalty area, only to see it sail over goalkeeper Reina and into the goal.[29] Three minutes later, Liverpool made another substitution, as Alonso went off with an injury to be replaced by defender Jan Kromkamp. Minutes later, West Ham captain Nigel Reo-Coker had an attempt to score, but his shot went over the Liverpool goal. West Ham subsequently made their first substitution of the match, as Ashton was replaced by fellow striker Bobby Zamora. Liverpool also replaced Crouch with midfielder Dietmar Hamann.[30]

West Ham made their second substitution of the match in the 77th minute, as they replaced Fletcher with Christian Dailly. They also changed formation to a 4–5–1 in an attempt to hang onto their lead.[29] Morientes headed a Cissé pass wide in the last 10 minutes as Liverpool looked to score an equaliser. West Ham made their final substitution of the match in the 85th minute, as striker Teddy Sheringham replaced Etherington. Sheringham's first involvement in the match was to concede a free kick for handball, which was subsequently put wide by Gerrard.[30] With the match entering injury time, Liverpool played the ball into the West Ham penalty area, where it was cleared but only as far as Gerrard, 35 yards (32 m) from goal; the Liverpool captain hit the ball on the volley and it flew along a low trajectory past goalkeeper Shaka Hislop into the bottom corner of the West Ham goal.[29] West Ham had another chance before full-time, but Konchesky's shot was saved by Reina. With the scores level at 3–3, the match went into extra time after the referee brought an end to the 90 minutes of play.[30]

Extra time

Liverpool got the first half of extra time under way, but the start was slow as players suffered with cramp, Carragher in particular.[29] In the 97th minute, Liverpool won a corner, which West Ham cleared to Liverpool defender John Arne Riise on the edge of the penalty area, but his shot went over the crossbar.[30] Liverpool won another corner in the 99th minute, which was cleared by West Ham; the ball came back into the penalty area and Morientes headed down for Cissé, but he was unable to control the ball. Before the end of the half, Hyypiä had a chance to score after running past Scaloni and Harewood, but his shot went wide of the West Ham goal.[29]

Just after the start of the second half of extra time, Liverpool had the first chance. Kromkamp advanced down the right wing, but his shot went wide of the West Ham goal.[29] West Ham won a corner in the 109th minute, but it came to nothing as Zamora was penalised for a foul on Reina. Players continued to struggle with cramp as Gerrard, Mohamed Sissoko, Finnan and Harewood all went down in quick succession.[30] West Ham won a free kick in the 114th minute, after Zamora was tripped by Hyypiä, but Benayoun's effort was cleared and almost resulted in a chance for Liverpool, before Morientes was tackled by Anton Ferdinand 6 yards (5.5 m) from the West Ham goal.[29] Two minutes from the end, Hamann was booked for a foul on Zamora; the subsequent free kick was met by Reo-Coker, whose shot was turned onto the post by Reina. The ball rebounded to Harewood, but his shot went wide of the goal. Neither team scored before the end of extra time, and the referee brought the match to an end with the scores level, resulting in a penalty shoot-out.[30]

Penalty shoot-out

The shoot-out took place at the end where the West Ham fans were seated, with Liverpool taking the first penalty. Hamann stepped up first and scored high to the right of Hislop. Zamora took the first penalty for West Ham, but his shot was saved by Reina.[30] Hyypiä took the next penalty for Liverpool, but he also missed, as Hislop saved his shot. Substitute Sheringham took West Ham's next penalty and scored, his shot beating Reina high to his left to level the shoot-out at 1–1.[29] Liverpool captain Gerrard took their next penalty and scored to make it 2–1, while Konchesky's shot was saved by Reina. Riise took the next penalty for Liverpool and scored to extend their lead to 3–1. Ferdinand was next and needed to score to keep West Ham in the shoot-out, but his penalty was saved by Reina, which meant Liverpool won the shoot-out 3–1 to win the FA Cup for the seventh time.[30]

Details

Liverpool3–3 (a.e.t.)West Ham United
Cissé Goal 32'
Gerrard Goal 54'90+1'
Report Carragher Goal 21' (o.g.)
Ashton Goal 28'
Konchesky Goal 64'
Penalties
Hamann Penalty scored
Hyypiä Penalty missed
Gerrard Penalty scored
Riise Penalty scored
3–1 Penalty missed Zamora
Penalty scored Sheringham
Penalty missed Konchesky
Penalty missed Ferdinand
Liverpool
West Ham United
GK 25 Spain Pepe Reina
RB 3 Republic of Ireland Steve Finnan
CB 23 England Jamie Carragher Yellow card 62'
CB 4 Finland Sami Hyypiä
LB 6 Norway John Arne Riise
RM 8 England Steven Gerrard (c)
CM 14 Spain Xabi Alonso Substituted off 67'
CM 22 Mali Mohamed Sissoko
LM 7 Australia Harry Kewell Substituted off 48'
CF 15 England Peter Crouch Substituted off 71'
CF 9 France Djibril Cissé
Substitutes:
GK 1 Poland Jerzy Dudek
DF 2 Netherlands Jan Kromkamp Substituted in 67'
DF 21 Mali Djimi Traoré
MF 16 Germany Dietmar Hamann Yellow card 118' Substituted in 71'
FW 19 Spain Fernando Morientes Substituted in 48'
Manager:
Spain Rafael Benítez
Liverpool vs West Ham 2006-05-13
GK 34 Trinidad and Tobago Shaka Hislop
RB 2 Argentina Lionel Scaloni
CB 5 England Anton Ferdinand
CB 4 Wales Danny Gabbidon
LB 3 England Paul Konchesky
RM 15 Israel Yossi Benayoun
CM 20 England Nigel Reo-Coker (c)
CM 6 Wales Carl Fletcher Substituted off 77'
LM 11 England Matthew Etherington Substituted off 85'
CF 10 England Marlon Harewood
CF 9 England Dean Ashton Yellow card 59' Substituted off 71'
Substitutes:
GK 23 England Jimmy Walker
DF 7 Scotland Christian Dailly Substituted in 77'
DF 19 Wales James Collins
FW 8 England Teddy Sheringham Substituted in 85'
FW 25 England Bobby Zamora Substituted in 71'
Manager:
England Alan Pardew

Man of the match

Match officials

Match rules

  • 90 minutes.
  • 30 minutes of extra-time if necessary.
  • Penalty shoot-out if scores still level.
  • Five named substitutes
  • Maximum of 3 substitutions.

Statistics

Statistic[31] Liverpool West Ham
Total shots 19 13
Shots on target 5 8
Corner kicks 5 4
Fouls committed 13 25
Offsides 3 2
Yellow cards 2 1
Red cards 0 0

Post-match

Steven Gerrard 2006
The final is remembered for the contribution of Liverpool captain Steven Gerrard

Liverpool's victory meant they won the FA Cup for the seventh time, the club's manager Rafael Benítez stated that neither side deserved to lose the match: "It was difficult to say we deserved to win or the other team. It was a magnificent final. We knew that they could score goals but that we could also. We needed to keep going but after 63 games it was really difficult." Liverpool captain Steven Gerrard also praised West Ham, stating: "West Ham were brilliant, they gave us a really good game but we had a never-say-die attitude and we stuck in there, our best chance was on penalties as we did not have any energy left."[32] Due to the nature of the comeback, the match has come to be regarded as The Gerrard Final, teammate Peter Crouch summed up the effect Gerrard had on the match: "When the injury-time board went up we thought our chance had gone, but it is always good to have a player like Steven Gerrard in your team."[33] A BBC Sport poll in May 2015 deemed Gerrard's goal to be the best in an FA Cup Final from the past 50 years.[34]

West Ham manager Alan Pardew described the defeat as hard to take: "It felt like a defeat when the third goal went in. We rallied and had a great chance in extra time. We had to dig in. This was a top team we were playing, but I felt we were going to win. Only a 35-yard Gerrard smasher was going to change that. The players have been magnificent – we are proud of the way we played." Captain Nigel Reo-Coker found defeat hard to take as he felt they had done enough to win the final: "I can't describe it how I feel at the moment – gutted because I think we deserved to win this game. The players put in a fantastic effort, but it just wasn't to be for us. It was a marvellous FA Cup final and we gave all we could. I hope everyone was proud – it just wasn't our day."[35]

Liverpool's victory set up a Community Shield match against Chelsea, winners of the 2005–06 Premier League. As FA Cup winners, Liverpool would have been awarded qualification into the UEFA Cup, but because they had qualified for the UEFA Champions League via their league position, the UEFA Cup place was passed to runners-up, West Ham.[1]

References

  1. ^ a b c "Liverpool win Cup final thriller". CNN. 13 May 2006. Retrieved 29 February 2012.
  2. ^ Stevenson, Jonathan (13 May 2006). "Final recalls Cup's magic days". BBC Sport. Retrieved 25 May 2007.
  3. ^ "Luton 3–5 Liverpool". BBC Sport. 7 January 2006. Retrieved 24 April 2015.
  4. ^ "Portsmouth 1–2 Liverpool". BBC Sport. 29 January 2006. Retrieved 24 April 2015.
  5. ^ "Liverpool 1–0 Manchester United". BBC Sport. 18 February 2006. Retrieved 24 April 2015.
  6. ^ "Birmingham 0–7 Liverpool". BBC Sport. 21 March 2006. Retrieved 24 April 2015.
  7. ^ "Chelsea 1–2 Liverpool". BBC Sport. 22 April 2006. Retrieved 24 April 2015.
  8. ^ "Ashton staying here – Worthington". BBC Sport. Retrieved 27 April 2015.
  9. ^ "Dean Ashton". Sky Sports. Retrieved 27 April 2015.
  10. ^ "Norwich 1–2 West Ham". BBC Sport. 7 January 2006. Retrieved 25 April 2015.
  11. ^ "West Ham 4–2 Blackburn Rovers". BBC Sport. 28 January 2006. Retrieved 25 April 2015.
  12. ^ "Bolton 0–0 West Ham". BBC Sport. 18 February 2006. Retrieved 25 April 2015.
  13. ^ "West Ham 2–1 Bolton (aet)". BBC Sport. 15 March 2006. Retrieved 25 April 2015.
  14. ^ "Manchester City 1–2 West Ham". BBC Sport. 20 March 2006. Retrieved 25 April 2015.
  15. ^ a b "Middlesbrough 0–1 West Ham". BBC Sport. 23 April 2006. Retrieved 25 April 2015.
  16. ^ "Liverpool 2–0 West Ham". BBC Sport. 29 October 2005. Retrieved 26 April 2015.
  17. ^ "West Ham 1–2 Liverpool". BBC Sport. 26 April 2006. Retrieved 26 April 2015.
  18. ^ "Portsmouth 1–3 Liverpool". BBC Sport. 7 May 2006. Retrieved 25 April 2015.
  19. ^ a b "Hammers look to upset Liverpool". BBC Sport. 12 May 2006. Retrieved 26 April 2015.
  20. ^ "West Ham 2–1 Tottenham". BBC Sport. 7 May 2006. Retrieved 26 April 2015.
  21. ^ "FA brings 2006 Cup final forward". BBC Sport. 3 March 2006. Retrieved 24 March 2008.
  22. ^ "Wembley dropped for FA Cup Final". BBC Sport. 21 February 2006. Retrieved 25 April 2015.
  23. ^ "Wembley windfall delights Cardiff". BBC Sport. 21 February 2006. Retrieved 25 April 2015.
  24. ^ Walker, Michael (25 April 2006). "Wiley replaces Dean as final referee". The Guardian. Retrieved 26 April 2015.
  25. ^ "Warning after FA Cup ticket theft". BBC News. 7 May 2006. Retrieved 24 March 2008.
  26. ^ "Stolen Cup tickets 'not replaced'". BBC News. 10 May 2006. Retrieved 25 March 2008.
  27. ^ "100 stolen FA Cup tickets seized". BBC News. 14 May 2006. Retrieved 24 March 2008.
  28. ^ "How the FA Cup final unfolded". BBC Sport. 13 May 2006. Retrieved 20 May 2015.
  29. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n Smyth, Rob (13 May 2006). "Liverpool v West Ham – live!". The Guardian. Retrieved 26 April 2015.
  30. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l m n "Liverpool 3–3 West Ham (aet)". BBC Sport. 13 May 2006. Retrieved 26 April 2015.
  31. ^ Smith, Paul (14 May 2006). "Stevie Thunder; The FA Cup History repeating as Gerrard leads Reds to shoot-out glory". Sunday Mirror. Trinity Mirror. Retrieved 23 April 2015.
  32. ^ "Benitez grateful to win thriller". BBC Sport. 13 May 2006. Retrieved 17 May 2015.
  33. ^ "When Steven Gerrard took the 2006 FA Cup Final by storm". TheFA.com. The Football Association. 2 January 2015. Retrieved 17 May 2015.
  34. ^ "FA Cup final: The greatest goal from the last 50 years voted by you". BBC Sport. 27 May 2015. Retrieved 4 August 2015.
  35. ^ "Cup loss hard to take for Pardew". BBC Sport. 13 May 2006. Retrieved 17 May 2015.
1896 FA Cup Final

The 1896 FA Cup Final was won by The Wednesday at the Crystal Palace, in a victory over Wolverhampton Wanderers.

2005–06 FA Cup

The 2005–06 FA Cup was the 125th staging of the world's oldest football competition, the FA Cup.

The competition began on 20 August 2005, with the lowest-ranked of the 674 entrants competing in the Extra Preliminary round. For the top 44 clubs, the FA Cup began in the Third Round in January.

For information on the matches played from the Extra Preliminary Round to the Fourth Round Qualifying, see 2005–06 FA Cup Qualifying Rounds.

Ties are all single-legged and take place at the stadium of the club drawn first. If scores are level at the end of a match, it is replayed at the away club's stadium, usually 10 days later. If the scores are still level, extra-time and penalties (if necessary) are used to determine a winner. However, from the semi-finals onwards, the ties take place at a neutral stadium, and there are no replays. That is to say, extra-time and penalties are played if necessary to determine a winner in a single match.

At the special request of England national team manager Sven-Göran Eriksson, the quarter-finals (i.e., 6th Round Proper) were held on weeknights (they would normally take place at weekends). This action was made to ensure that the season finishes as early as possible, allowing players a full month's rest before the 2006 World Cup finals.

The semi-finals were staged at neutral venues and, like the final, would not be replayed in the event of a draw.

The Football Association had hoped to stage the final at the newly rebuilt Wembley Stadium, London on 13 May 2006, but due to the uncertainty of the new stadium being completed in time, the Millennium Stadium in Cardiff hosted the final, which was contested between Liverpool and West Ham United.

2006 FA Community Shield

The 2006 FA Community Shield (also known as The FA Community Shield in partnership with McDonald's for sponsorship reasons) was the 84th staging of the FA Community Shield, an annual football match played between the winners of the Premier League and FA Cup. The match was played between 2005–06 FA Cup winners Liverpool and 2005–06 Premier League champions Chelsea on 13 August 2006 at the Millennium Stadium, Cardiff. Chelsea were appearing in the competition for the sixth time, while Liverpool were making their 21st appearance. It was the final Community Shield to be held at the Millennium Stadium following the reconstruction of Wembley Stadium.

Chelsea, the Shield holders, qualified for the match as a result of winning the Premier League, which was their second successive league championship. Liverpool entered the competition after winning the FA Cup final against West Ham United 3–1 on penalties.

Watched by a crowd of 56,275, John Arne Riise opened the scoring for Liverpool early in the first half, only for Chelsea's recently signed forward Andriy Shevchenko to equalise shortly before half-time. Both sides had chances to win the match in the second half, but a Peter Crouch goal late in the half ensured Liverpool won the match 2–1, to win the Community Shield for the 15th time.

Alan Wiley

Alan G. Wiley (born 27 May 1960) is a former English football referee in the FA Premier League, who is based in Burntwood, Staffordshire.

Christian Dailly

Christian Eduard Dailly (born 23 October 1973) is a Scottish former professional footballer. A versatile player, he was often seen in central defence, although he played in most outfield positions during his career.

He started his professional career as a teenager, playing as a striker for Dundee United. He helped them win the 1993–94 Scottish Cup. Towards the end of his time with United, Dailly began playing as a central defender. He moved to English Premier League club Derby County in 1996. After two seasons with Derby, Dailly moved to Blackburn Rovers for a transfer fee of £5,350,000. During his time with Blackburn, the club were relegated in 1999 and Dailly lost his place in the team.

He moved to West Ham United in 2001 for £1,700,000. During his time with West Ham, the club were relegated in 2003 but won promotion in 2005. Dailly appeared as a substitute in the 2006 FA Cup Final, which West Ham lost on penalties to Liverpool. After a loan spell with Southampton, Dailly moved to Rangers in January 2008. He helped the team reach the 2008 UEFA Cup Final. His final appearance for Rangers was as a substitute in the 2009 Scottish Cup Final, which Rangers won 1–0 against Falkirk. After a two-year spell with Charlton Athletic and short stints with Portsmouth and Southend United, Dailly retired in 2012.

Dailly made 67 full international appearances for Scotland between 1997 and 2008. He was part of the Scotland squad at the 1998 FIFA World Cup. Dailly is also the record cap-holder for the Scotland under-21 team, having made 35 appearances between 1990 and 1996.

Darren Cann (referee)

Darren Cann (born 22 January 1969) is an International and Premier League Assistant Referee best known for running the line in The UEFA Champions League Final and The World Cup Final.

John W. Henry

John William Henry II (born September 13, 1949) is an American businessman and investor and the founder of John W. Henry & Company, an investment management firm. He is the principal owner of The Boston Globe, the Boston Red Sox and Liverpool Football Club and co-owner of Roush Fenway Racing. In March 2006, Boston Magazine estimated Henry's net worth at $1.1 billion but noted that his company had recently experienced difficulties. In November 2012, the company announced that it would stop managing clients' money by the end of the year, and Henry confirmed that total assets under the firm's management had fallen from $2.5 billion in 2006 to less than $100 million as of late 2012. As of July 2017, Forbes estimated his net worth to be $2.6 billion.

Karen Walker (footballer)

Karen Walker (born 29 July 1969) is an English former international football centre-forward. She played for Doncaster Belles for 20 years, starting at the age of 15, and began playing for England as a teenager, making 83 appearances and scoring a record 40 goals until she retired from international football in 2003. Walker's uncompromising style of play earned her the sobriquet "Wacker".Walker is particularly remembered for her performances in the 1995 World Cup in Sweden. She finished her career with two seasons at Leeds United, and in her very last game, against Arsenal in the 2006 FA Cup Final, she left the pitch to a standing ovation.

In 2007, she was part of the BBC team covering the FIFA Women's World Cup in China. Later that year she was inducted into the English Football Hall of Fame.

Lionel Scaloni

Lionel Sebastián Scaloni (Spanish pronunciation: [ljoˈnel eskaˈloni]; born 16 May 1978) is an Argentine retired footballer, and is the manager of the Argentina national team. A player of wide range, he played as a right back or right midfielder.

He spent most of his professional career with Deportivo in Spain, amassing totals of 258 games and 15 goals over 12 seasons in La Liga with three teams. He also spent several years in Italy, with Lazio and Atalanta.

Scaloni won seven caps for Argentina between 2003 and 2006, and was part of their 2006 World Cup squad.

Liverpool F.C.

Liverpool Football Club is a professional football club in Liverpool, England, that competes in the Premier League, the top tier of English football. The club has won 6 European Cups, more than any other English club, 3 UEFA Cups, 3 UEFA Super Cups, 18 League titles, 7 FA Cups, a record 8 League Cups, 15 FA Community Shields and 1 Football League Super Cup.

Founded in 1892, the club joined the Football League the following year and has played at Anfield since its formation. Liverpool established itself as a major force in English and European football in the 1970s and 1980s when Bill Shankly, Bob Paisley, Joe Fagan and Kenny Dalglish led the club to a combined eleven League titles, four European Cups, two UEFA Cups, seven domestic cups and several super cups within a span of eighteen seasons. Under the management of Rafael Benítez and captained by homegrown star Steven Gerrard, Liverpool became European champions for the fifth time in 2005 before adding a sixth crown under Jürgen Klopp in 2019.

Liverpool was the ninth highest-earning football club in the world in 2016–17, with an annual revenue of €424.2 million, and the world's eighth most valuable football club in 2018, valued at $1.944 billion. The club is one of the most widely supported teams in the world. Liverpool has long-standing rivalries with Manchester United and Everton.

The club's supporters have been involved in two major tragedies: the Heysel Stadium disaster, where escaping fans were pressed against a collapsing wall at the 1985 European Cup Final in Brussels, with 39 people – mostly Italians and Juventus fans – dying, after which English clubs were given a five-year ban from European competition, and the Hillsborough disaster in 1989, where 96 Liverpool supporters died in a crush against perimeter fencing.

The team changed from red shirts and white shorts to an all-red home strip in 1964 which has been used ever since. Red has been the main shirt colour ever since 1896. The club's anthem is "You'll Never Walk Alone".

Mike Dean (referee)

Michael Dean (born 2 June 1968) is an English professional football referee who officiates primarily in the Premier League. He is based in Heswall, Wirral, and is a member of the Cheshire County Football Association.

Since his appointment as a Select Group referee in 2000, Dean has officiated a number of notable matches, including the FA Community Shield and the finals of the FA Cup, Football League Cup and FA Trophy.

National Youth Choirs of Great Britain

The National Youth Choirs of Great Britain (NYCGB) is the family of choirs for outstanding young singers, and those with outstanding potential, in the United Kingdom. It comprises a total of five choirs for around 750 young people between the ages of 9 and 25:

The National Youth Boys' Choir (incorporating Cambiata Voices).

The National Youth Girls' Choir

The National Youth Training Choir

The National Youth Choir

The National Youth Chamber Choir (incorporating the NYCGB Fellowship Programme)

Paul Konchesky

Paul Martyn Konchesky (born 15 May 1981) is an English professional footballer who last played as a left back for East Thurrock United. He has previously played for Charlton Athletic, Tottenham Hotspur, West Ham United, Fulham, Liverpool, Nottingham Forest, Queens Park Rangers, Leicester City, Gillingham, and Billericay Town. Konchesky made 15 appearances for the England under-21 team and was capped twice for England.

Peter Grant (footballer, born 1965)

Peter Grant (born 30 August 1965) is a Scottish football player and coach. During his playing career, Grant played for Celtic, Norwich City, Reading and Bournemouth. He was awarded a testimonial match, played against Bayern Munich, by Celtic in 1997. Grant played in two full international matches for Scotland, both in 1989. Since retiring as a player, Grant has since worked as a football coach. He was manager of Norwich City for a year, and also briefly the caretaker manager of Fulham.

Statue of Bobby Moore, Wembley

The Bobby Moore statue is a bronze sculpture of the former West Ham and England footballer Bobby Moore, situated outside England's national stadium, Wembley Stadium, in Wembley Park, north-west London. It commemorates the life of Moore, who captained the only England side ever to win the World Cup, defeating Germany 4-2 in the 1966 FIFA World Cup Final held in England at the old Wembley Stadium, demolished in 2003. Commissioned by the Football Association, it was unveiled outside the new stadium when it opened in 2007, fourteen years after Moore's death from cancer, aged 51. Standing 20 feet (6.1 m) tall on a stone plinth, it looks over spectators as they walk down Wembley Way into the stadium. Sculpted by the Royal Sculptor Philip Jackson, it is Jackson's second piece featuring Moore, after the World Cup Sculpture unveiled in 2003.

Steve Finnan

Stephen John "Steve" Finnan (born 24 April 1976) is an Irish former international footballer who played as a right back.

He is the only player to have played in the World Cup, UEFA Champions League, UEFA Cup, Intertoto Cup, all four levels of the English league football and the Football Conference. Among the honours won during his career was the 2005 UEFA Champions League Final for Liverpool. Finnan is known for his attacking role and ability to cross the ball.He played 52 internationals for the Republic of Ireland from his debut in 2000, scoring twice. He played for them at the 2002 FIFA World Cup.

Steven Gerrard

Steven George Gerrard (born 30 May 1980) is an English professional football manager and former player who manages Scottish Premiership club Rangers. He spent the majority of his playing career as a central midfielder for Liverpool, with most of that time spent as club captain, as well as captaining the England national team. Widely regarded as one of the greatest midfielders of all time, Gerrard was awarded the UEFA Club Footballer of the Year award in 2005, and the Ballon d'Or Bronze Award. In 2009, Zinedine Zidane and Pelé said that they considered Gerrard to be the best footballer in the world. A versatile and well-rounded player, highly regarded for his leadership, Gerrard is the only footballer to score in an FA Cup Final, a League Cup Final, a UEFA Cup Final and a UEFA Champions League Final, winning on each occasion.Born and raised in Whiston, Merseyside, Gerrard joined the Liverpool Academy at age 9. At age 17, he signed his first professional contract with Liverpool and made his senior debut a year later in 1998. In the 2000–01 season, Gerrard helped Liverpool secure a treble of the League Cup, the UEFA Cup and the FA Cup. A UEFA Super Cup and another League Cup followed, and Gerrard was made captain in 2003. In 2005, Gerrard led Liverpool to a historic fifth European title, scoring a crucial late goal in the group stages, and being named Man of the Match as he scored Liverpool's first goal and won a penalty kick as Liverpool came from 3–0 down to defeat Milan in what became known as the Miracle of Istanbul, regarded as one of the greatest finals in the history of the tournament. The following year, Gerrard scored two goals and assisted another in the 2006 FA Cup Final, which has been called The Gerrard Final and is widely regarded as one of the greatest cup finals in the history of the competition.Considered by many to be Liverpool's greatest ever player, Gerrard won a total of two FA Cups, three League Cups, one UEFA Champions League, one UEFA Cup, one FA Community Shield and one UEFA Super Cup in his 17 seasons at Anfield. He was named in the PFA Team of the Year a record eight times, the UEFA Team of the Year and the FIFA World XI three times, was named PFA Players' Player of the Year in 2006 and the FWA Footballer of the Year in 2009. Despite collective and individual success, Gerrard never won the Premier League, finishing runner-up with Liverpool on three occasions. He joined Major League Soccer club LA Galaxy in 2015, spending one-and-a-half seasons there before his retirement in 2016. After retiring from playing football, Gerrard became a coach in the Liverpool youth academy and managed their under-18 team during the 2017–18 season, before becoming manager of Scottish Premiership club Rangers ahead of the 2018–19 season.

At international level, Gerrard is the fourth-most capped player in the history of the England national team with 114 caps, scoring 21 goals. Gerrard made his international debut in 2000, and represented his country at the 2000, 2004 and 2012 UEFA European Football Championships, as well as the 2006, 2010 and 2014 FIFA World Cups, captaining the team for the latter two tournaments. He was named as the permanent England captain shortly before UEFA Euro 2012, where he was named in the UEFA Team of the Tournament. Gerrard won his 100th cap in 2012, becoming the sixth player to reach that milestone for England. Gerrard announced his retirement from international football in 2014.

Teddy Sheringham

Edward Paul Sheringham, MBE (born 2 April 1966) is an English football manager and former player.

Sheringham played as a forward, mostly as a second striker, in a 24-year professional career. Sheringham began his career at Millwall, where he scored 111 goals between 1983 and 1991, and is the club's second all-time leading scorer. He left to join First Division Nottingham Forest. A year later, Sheringham scored Forest's first ever Premiership goal, and was signed by Tottenham Hotspur. After five seasons at Spurs, Sheringham joined Manchester United where he won three Premiership titles, one FA Cup, one UEFA Champions League, an Intercontinental Cup and an FA Charity Shield. In 2001, he was named both the PFA Players' Player of the Year and FWA Footballer of the Year. The pinnacle of his career came when he scored the equaliser and provided the assist for Manchester United's winning goal in the 1999 UEFA Champions League Final against Bayern Munich.

After leaving Manchester United at the end of the 2000–01 season, Sheringham re-joined Tottenham Hotspur, where he was a losing finalist in the 2001–02 Football League Cup. He spent one season at newly promoted Portsmouth, scoring the club's first Premier League goal, before joining West Ham United, where he helped the club gain promotion from the 2004–05 Football League Championship. The following season, Sheringham appeared for West Ham in the 2006 FA Cup Final, becoming the third-oldest player to appear in an FA Cup Final.Sheringham is currently the eleventh-highest goalscorer in the history of the Premiership with 146 goals, and is the competition's 19th-highest appearance maker. He holds the record as the oldest outfield player to appear in a Premier League match (40 years, 272 days) and the oldest player to score in a Premier League match (40 years, 268 days).Sheringham was capped 51 times for the England national football team, scoring 11 times. He appeared in the 1998 and 2002 FIFA World Cups, as well as the 1996 UEFA European Championship.

Sheringham retired from competitive football at the end of the 2007–08 season with Colchester United, at the age of 42. He has since managed League Two club Stevenage, and ATK of the Indian Super League.

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