Club Statement: Changes to the FA Cup

The news from the FA this week has drawn a lot of responses from many football clubs and fans throughout much of the country.

With replays in the FA Cup, from the First Round Proper, to no longer be part of the format for season 2024/2025 and for another five years at least, how can this benefit clubs in the lower leagues when an FA Cup run brings added revenue to clubs, added profile and wonderful memories that will last a lifetime.

It appears that clubs in the EFL, the National League and grassroots clubs were not even consulted.

For many of these clubs – and especially the 32 non-League clubs who will qualify for the First Round Proper in November – they will no longer be able to experience what the FA Cup is all about for the players, fans and the many volunteers who help these clubs survive, often with great benefit for their local community.

As a non-league club, for whom the FA Cup is always a special occasion, we cannot allow the news of the format changes to the Emirates FA Cup to pass without acknowledging that we share the frustration, anger and overriding sadness of the majority of clubs and fans across the pyramid.

 

We can only hope that this decision can be re-considered and the opportunity exists to experience the magic of a cup replay in the future. There is always something special about the David v Goliath occasion that the FA Cup inevitably brings to football and is quite unique in this country and has been for many, many years. It would be a shame if these opportunities are greatly reduced.