THE TOP 5 FA CUP FINALS OF ALL TIME - RANKED

It's FA Cup final weekend and we're getting a special one. Manchester City and Manchester United will battle at Wembley - the first Manchester derby the showpiece has seen. City, of course, chase a treble this season and their arch-rivals want to end their hopes of matching the famous 1999 season.

It promises to be an enthralling game and that has Football FanCast looking back at some of the best finals so far. Here's a list of the all-time greatest five FA Cup finals.

1989 - Everton 2-3 Liverpool

One of the most emotional occasions football will likely ever see. The Hillsborough disaster, which occurred in Liverpool's semi-final against Nottingham Forest, led to a day that affected both sets of fans in the final. Chants of 'Merseyside' at Wembley remain incredible to look back on as the two rivals united.

The game was a fantastic one, too. An Ian Rush brace, a Stuart McCall brace - with Rush's second putting Liverpool over the line after extra-time. As an overall occasion, it'll never be replicated.

1981 - Manchester City 2-3 Tottenham

Now, technically, this was a replay of the final. Back then, draws at the end of extra-time meant the entire game would be replayed - and the initial contest here finished 1-1.

Not only did we find a winner in the follow-up, though, but it came through one of the most iconic goals in the competition's history. Ricky Villa slalomed his way through the City's defence to finally win the trophy for Spurs. It was an all-time great goal in a game labelled 'match of the century' at the time.

1990 - Crystal Palace 3-3 Manchester United

Palace went into this as overwhelming underdogs - though, they had knocked out Liverpool on their way to the final. Still, United were expected to see them off. The Eagles fought admirably at Wembley and nearly won before Mark Hughes found an extra-time equaliser to force a replay. United would win that replay 1-0.

This is also a historically significant final. It was Sir Alex Ferguson's first trophy with United, providing a springboard for over two decades of dominance at Old Trafford. This Palace side was also the last all-English XI in a final, while this was the final time an all-UK XI won the trophy.

2006 - Liverpool 3-3 West Ham

A marginally more modern final here. Liverpool, having won the Champions League in 2005, were enormous favourites. West Ham, however, found a 2-0 lead that forced a brilliant comeback from the Reds. The Hammers - through a Paul Konchesky cross - regained the lead in the second half and held it into stoppage time.

But Steven Gerrard produced one of the most incredible strikes you'll ever see to save his side as the clock ticked over to 90. This is the 'Gerrard final' - he'd already assisted Liverpool's first and scored the second, after all. The Reds' captain would eventually score in the shootout, too, in one of the greatest cup final displays you'll ever see.

1953 - Blackpool 4-3 Bolton

The naming of a final after a player started here and while we're going back some way, it's a story that shouldn't be forgotten. Stanley Matthews was England's greatest-ever player and one of the best in the world full-stop. He'd never won a significant trophy, however, and was 38 going into the '53 final. Blackpool worried he was past it when they'd signed him five years earlier...

Matthews wouldn't pass up the opportunity to earn his medal, though, and he put in a legendary performance in a sensational game. A performance so good, in fact, that teammate Stan Mortensen scored a hat-trick and yet this is still known as the 'Stanley Matthews final'.

It did turn out that Matthews was far from past it, then. He'd win the first-ever Ballon d'Or in '56 and played top-flight football until he was 50. This, however, was the unquestionable highlight of his career.

2023-06-02T08:11:15Z dg43tfdfdgfd