SHREWSBURY: Premier League leaders Liverpool were given a huge scare by third-tier Shrewsbury Town as they squandered a two-goal lead to draw 2-2 away in a pulsating FA Cup fourth round tie last night.
A much-changed Liverpool appeared to be cruising into the fifth round for the first time since Juergen Klopp took over in 2015, but Shrewsbury substitute Jason Cummins had the compact New Meadow stadium rocking with a memorable brace.
First he coolly tucked away a 65th-minute penalty and then he outpaced Liverpool’s nervy back four to beat Adrian with a cool right-foot finish from the edge of the area.
Liverpool, who have been untouchable in the Premier League this season making a first title for 30 years almost inevitable, took the lead through teenager Curtis Jones after 15 minutes.
The seven-time Cup winners doubled their lead 28 seconds after half-time when Shrewsbury’s Donald Love scored an own goal.
But European and world club champion Liverpool lost concentration and were punished as Shrewsbury roared back to set up a thrilling climax and earn a replay at Anfield.
Earlier, Manchester United thrashed third-tier Tranmere Rovers 6-0 to join Manchester City in the fifth round but it failed to silence protests against the club’s owners.
A muddy and bobbly Prenton Park pitch looked the perfect stage for an old-fashioned Cup shock but it was Tranmere who sank as Harry Maguire’s thunderbolt signalled a United onslaught that saw Diogo Dalot, Jesse Lingard, Phil Jones and Anthony Martial all score before the interval.
Mason Greenwood added a second-half penalty meaning it was the first time since 1892 that six different players had scored in the same game for United.
It was an impressive display from a United side that had lost three of their last four Premier League games, and eclipsed Manchester City’s 4-0 win over Championship side Fulham earlier, but it might only be a temporary respite for disgruntled fans.
They sang songs against the Glazer family who own the club and vice-chairman Ed Woodward even as the goals rained in.
“It was really important to get the win, coming off the back of a bad performance and result against Burnley,” skipper Maguire said referring to Wednesday’s 2-0 home defeat.