Date: Saturday, 7th January 1956.
Venue: Elland Road Leeds.
Cup 3rd Round.
United 1 Cardiff City 2
United: Brook. Cardiff City:
39,406. Receipts £5057.
Leeds United: Wood; Dunn, Hair; Gibson,
Charles, Kerfoot; Williams, Brook, Charlton, Vickers,
Cardiff City: Howells; R.Stitfall,
Sherwood; Harrington, Malloy, C.Baker; Walsh, Kirtley, Ford, Hitchens, McSeveney.
Referee: Mr R. Mann (Worcester).
In the seasons 1955-56, 1956-57, and 1957-58 Leeds United
met Cardiff City
in the Third Round of the FA Cup. Each time the score was the same, 2-1 to the
In the season 1955-56 Leeds were in the Second Division and
Cardiff City were in the First Division and Harold Brook scored for Leeds and Hitchens and McSeveney were the
scorers for the Welshmen.
Had the possibility been suggested before the draw for the
1955-56 Third Round of the F.A. Cup that Leeds United would be drawn at home to
Cardiff City in three consecutive seasons, a statistician would have calculated
the odds at one in two million. Yet something even more unlikely occurred. The
results show that in both of the first two games in the 1955-56 and 1956-57
seasons the score was 2-1 to the visitors, after a goalless first half!
United’s thirty-two match unbeaten
home run at Elland Road
was brought to a halt of what was to become a unique FA Cup saga. United had
suggested a later kick-off time so they could use their new floodlights, but
the Welsh club, who did not have lights at their own Ninian
Park, declined. Trevor Morris the Cardiff Boss said, “We might be at a
disadvantage under lights as many of out players have no experience of them at
all.” However there were enough bright things on the pitch to illuminate Elland Road as the match
turned out to be a cracker. Although the first half brought no goals, it was
embroidered by excellent football and some memorable confrontations. Young Jack
Charlton, making his FA Cup debut, did such a good marking job on Trevor Ford
that the multi-capped Welshman moved to the wing with Gerry Hitchens
moving inside. It was a tactical ploy that paid off for Cardiff.
Fifteen minutes from the end it was Hitchens who
drove in Johnny McSeveney’s pass. Provider McSeveney turned executioner seven minutes later by netting
Cardiff’s second. United, whose own
Welsh star John Charles had been well shackled by Danny Malloy, had been caught
napping after having the bulk of possession. Cardiff
defended in depth and United were only able to find a way through three minutes
from the end when Harold Brook, the former Sheffield United striker, scored
from an Harold Williams centre. United’s
early exit from the Cup let them concentrate on the League and they achieved
promotion from the Second Division as runners-up to Sheffield
Wednesday. But they had not seen the back of Cardiff
in the Cup. Not by a long way!
Leeds United 1955-56:
Back Row: Jack Charlton (5), Archie Gibson (4),
Jimmy Dunn (2), Royden Wood (1),
Grenville Hair (3), Eric Kerfoot (6).
Front Row: Harold Williams (7), George
Hutchinson (8), John Charles (9) Captain,
Peter Vickers (10), Jackie Overfield (11).
Inset: Albert Nightingale, Harold Brook
Harold Brook got the Leeds goal Gerry Hitchens and
John McSeveney scored for Cardiff
Ron Howells was the Cardiff keeper Ron Stitfall and Alf Sherwood were the full-backs
The Cardiff City Half Back line was
Alan Harrington Danny Malloy and Colin Baker
Trevor Ford was not given much room by Jack