London, Jan. 4 (Reuters): The third round of the FA Cup swung into action Saturday with an early kick-off at Old Trafford but ten-times winners Manchester United avoided any upset by thumping first division leaders Portsmouth 4-1.
United seemed ready to give the world’s oldest soccer competition their full attention this time as manager Alex Ferguson fielded all his big guns. Ruud van Nistelrooy converted two penalties and David Beckham and Paul Scholes got one each to send United into the fourth round.
Dennis Bergkamp scored his 100th goal for Arsenal as the FA Cup holders beat third division Oxford United 2-0 in the third round. Defender Scott McNiven committed an own-goal.