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The 1972 FA Cup Final took place on 6 May 1972 at Wembley Stadiummarker. It was the Centenary final (although only the 91st final due to world wars) and the 44th to be played at Wembley. It was contested between cup holders Arsenal, who had won the English Championship and FA Cup the previous season, and Leeds United, who had won the Inter-Cities Fairs Cup and finished 2nd in the league the previous season. Arsenal planned to make it the third decade for a club to return as Cup-holders and win again for the second successive year, as Newcastle had done in 1952 and Tottenham in 1962.

The final is also the origin of the song Leeds! Leeds! Leeds! (commonly known as Marching On Together) as the B-side of the Leeds cup final song, played to this day by United and several other Leeds sports teams.

Match summary

Leeds were the better team all through. Their back four had no trouble in mastering the Arsenal attacks and negating the threat posed by strikers George and Radford. By contrast, the Leeds front runners, Clarke and Jones, continually harassed the Arsenal defence.

The Jones-Clarke combination produced a goal in the fifty-third minute. Jones sent across a hard, shoulder-high centre and 'Sniffer' Clarke headed powerfully past Barnett's left hand from fifteen yards.

A match that often fell below the highest level began badly with a foul by Clarke on Ball in the first five seconds and the first of four bookings — McNab bringing down Lorimer as early as the second minute. Neither side played consistently up to their capabilities, yet both had their moments. George's fierce volley cannoned back off the bar for Arsenal, and both Clarke and Lorimer struck the woodwork for Leeds.

Leeds' jubilation at the end was tempered by a last-minute injury to Mick Jones, who dislocated his shoulder and had to be helped up the steps by Norman Hunter to receive his winners' medal.

Match facts



LEEDS UNITED:
GK 1 Harvey
RB 2 Reaney
LB 3 Madeley
MF 4 Bremner (c)
CB 5 Charlton
CB 6 Hunter
RW 7 Lorimer
FW 8 Clarke
FW 9 Jones
MF 10 Giles
LW 11 Gray
Substitute:
MF 12 Bates
Manager:
Don Revie
ARSENAL:
GK 1 Barnett
RB 2 Rice
LB 3 McNab
MF 4 Storey
CB 5 McLintock (c)
CB 6 Simpson
W 7 Armstrong
MF 8 Ball
FW 9 George
FW 10 Radford
MF 11 Graham
Substitute:
FW 12 Kennedy
Manager:
Bertie Mee
MATCH RULES
  • 90 minutes.
  • 30 minutes of extra-time if necessary.
  • Replay if scores still level.
  • One named substitute.


Road to Wembley

Leeds United

Home teams listed first.

Round 3: Leeds United 4–1 Bristol Rovers

Round 4: Liverpool 0–0 Leeds United
Replay: Leeds United 2–0 Liverpool


Round 5: Cardiff City 0–2 Leeds United
 
 


Round 6: Leeds United 2–1 Spurs

Semi-final: Leeds United 3–0 Birmingham City
(at Hillsborough Stadiummarker, Sheffieldmarker)
 
 

Arsenal

Home teams listed first.

Round 3: Swindon Town 0–2 Arsenal

Round 4: Arsenal 2–1 Reading
 


Round 5: Derby County 2–2 Arsenal
Replay: Arsenal 0–0 Derby County
2nd Replay: Arsenal 1–0 Derby County (at Filbert Streetmarker)


Round 6: Leyton Orient 0–1 Arsenal

Semi-final: Stoke City 1–1 Arsenal
(at Villa Parkmarker, Birminghammarker)
Replay: Arsenal 2–1 Stoke City
:(at Goodison Parkmarker, Evertonmarker)


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