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Flashback: Blackpool v United Cup Final 1948

As Manchester United travel to the seaside on Tuesday night for the first time since 1974, younger fans may regard Blackpool as a newcomer to top flight football but that was not always the case. It was one of England’s leading clubs after the war with legends like Sir Stanley Matthews and Stan Mortensen striking fear in everyone they faced. Their 1948 FA Cup Final meeting with United was described at the time as “one of the greatest cup finals in history”.  United had reached Wembley via a seemingly impossible route that saw them face first division opposition in every round. After beating  Aston Villa 6-4 in round three they had to face league champions Liverpool who were beaten 3-0. That was followed by a 2-0 victory over Charlton then a 4-2 win against Preston. Centre forward  Stan Pearson scored a hat-trick in the 3-1 semi final defeat of  Derby at Hillsborough before facing Blackpool in the final.

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