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Neil Critchley inspires stunning FA Cup win against Sam Allardyce

Former Liverpool coach Neil Critchley and his Blackpool side have beaten Sam Allardyce and West Brom to progress into the fourth round of the FA Cup.

Critchley, who was Liverpool’s first-team coach during the 1-0 victory against Shrewsbury in the competition last season, pulled off one of the results of the day as Blackpool prevailed at the expense of the Premier League outfit via a penalty shootout.

Jerry Yates put the Seasiders ahead to make it 1-0 five minutes before half-time. Semi Ajayi, who scored the equalising goal for the Baggies at Anfield last month, levelled proceedings seven minutes into the second half before Gary Madine restored Blackpool’s lead minutes later.

Matheus Pereira scored from the spot on the stroke of 80 minutes to force extra-time, but in the end, the day ultimatley belonged to Blackpool.

Club-captain and goalkeeper Chris Maxwell proved to be the hero after he denied Pereira to claim a gargantuan victory for the League One outfit. He saved three of West Brom’s spot-kicks in total.

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Remarkably, it was the first time the Tangerines have beaten top-flight opposition in FA Cup since 1976.

As such, Critchley ironically became the first manager to eliminate Allardyce from the competition since Jurgen Klopp did so in January 2018.

That particular result, just over three years ago, took place during a Merseyside derby at Anfield. Virgil van Dijk was the match-winner on that occasion. It just happened to be the Dutchman’s Liverpool debut, too.

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Klopp has an unfavourable record against Allardyce. The Liverpool boss has just one victory against the former England manager, after all, in his previous six meetings.

Luckily, for Klopp, he could trust his former Liverpool coach Critchley to weave more FA Cup magic to get one over Allardyce where he failed to do so only two weeks prior.

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