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Blades win giant-killing award

17 May 2014

On FA Cup final day, United's heroics in the competition this season have been recognised.

If one thing defines the romance of the FA Cup above all others it is undoubtedly its famous tales of giant-killing acts.

For the past three seasons The FA has been giving fans the opportunity to vote for their most memorable Cup upset each campaign, and with it the honour of receiving the Ronnie Radford Award.

Launched in 2010-11, The Ronnie Radford Award - named after the former Hereford United midfielder who famously scored a 30-yard screamer in that 1972 replay against Newcastle United to haul the then-trailing Bulls back into the tie - honours the team that produces the biggest Cup upset during the season.

As ever, this year's competition has also thrown up its fair share of shock results. Conference Premier side Macclesfield Town's resounding 4-0 First Round victory over League One side Swindon Town. Fifth-tier Kidderminster Harriers' 3-2 victory at Peterborough United in the Third Round or Rochdale's 2-0 ousting of Leeds United - all of which were contenders for the 2013-14 award.

But, with a whopping 62 per cent of the vote, the overwhelming victors this season are Sheffield United for the 2-1 win at Premier League Aston Villa in the Third Round.

It would be the first of many upsets inflicted by the Blades as Nigel Clough's men marched all the way to Wembley Stadium for a semi-final with Hull City. As well as the win at Villa Park, it was a run that would see United dispose of Colchester United, Cambridge United, Fulham, Nottingham Forest and Charlton Athletic. But it was undoubtedly the memorable day at Villa Park that stuck in the memories of supporters.

The Blades stunned the home side taking the lead through a deflected Jamie Murphy strike. Nicklas Helenius fired in an equaliser for the Villans, but Ryan Flynn unleashed a left-foot strike into the top corner for the winner and a place in Round Four.

United will receive the award at Wembley Stadium during the Cup final show.

MACCLESFIELD TOWN 4-0 Swindon Town First Round 16.7%
Peterborough United 2-3 KIDDERMINSTER HARRIERS Third Round 11.51%
ROCHDALE 2-0 Leeds United Third Round 9.56%
Aston Villa 1-2 SHEFFIELD UNITED Third Round 62.23%

Past Winners
CRAWLEY TOWN 2-1 Derby County (Third Round 2011)
SWINDON TOWN 2-1 Wigan Athletic (Third Round 2012)
Norwich City 0-1 LUTON TOWN (Fourth Round 2013)

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