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Reading dump Liverpool out of FA Cup

Reading players celebrate their stunning 2-1 FA Cup third round replay victory over Liverpool at Anfield.
Reading players celebrate their stunning 2-1 FA Cup third round replay victory over Liverpool at Anfield.
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • Reading recover from going a goal behind to claim a shock 2-1 FA Cup third round win at Liverpool
  • Championship side Reading level with a last-gasp penalty before Shane Long's extra-time winner
  • A Peter Lovenkrands hat-trick sees Newcastle beat Plymouth 3-0 to also reach fourth round

(CNN) -- Liverpool's disastrous season plunged to new depths as they suffered a humiliating 2-1 English FA Cup exit to Championship side Reading at Anfield.

The Reds lost star players Steven Gerrard and Fernando Torres to injuries and were then stunned by their opponents, who forced extra-time before substitute Shane Long headed the winner in this third round replay.

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Gerrard had seen a shot deflected home by Reading defender Ryan Bertrand to give Liverpool the lead in the final seconds of the first-half.

They held that lead until injury-time, when Gylfi Sigurdsson equalized from the penalty spot after Yossi Benayoun's clumsy challenge on Long.

However, Liverpool were a shambles in extra-time and in the 100th minute Brynjar Gunnarsson's superb cross from the right was headed home by Long from close range.

Liverpool were boosted ahead of the tie by confirmation that the deal to sign Argentina winger Maxi Rodriguez had been completed.

However, this defeat will heap further pressure on manager Rafael Benitez, with the club also out of the Champions League and domestic League Cup, and trailing in their bid to claim the fourth Champions League place.

Meanwhile, in the evening's other FA Cup third round replay, Championship leaders Newcastle United beat division rivals Plymouth 3-0 courtesy of a hat-trick from Danish striker Peter Lovenkrands.