FA Cup replays scrapped as format gets major shake-up for next season

A major change to the FA Cup format has been announcedA major change to the FA Cup format has been announced
A major change to the FA Cup format has been announced | Getty Images
The changes have been announced due to the new expanded format of the Champions League

FA Cup replays will be scrapped after the first round proper from next season as part of a series of major changes to the format of football’s oldest domestic cup competition. The first round of the FA Cup sees professional teams from League One and League Two enter, with Championship and Premier League teams joining from the third round.

Replays currently take place until the fifth round, but this has been scrapped completely to accommodate the expanded Champions League, Europa League and Europa Conference League format which sees teams that qualify for Europe play eight times instead of the six that they have become accustomed to since 2003.

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Alongside this change, every FA Cup round will now take place on a weekend, while the final has been moved forward to the Saturday of the penultimate Premier League weekend as opposed to late May.

FA CEO Mark Bullingham said: “The Emirates FA Cup is our biggest asset and generates over 60 percent of our revenue to invest into the game, so it is critical to secure a strong format for the future.

“This new agreement between the FA and the Premier League strengthens the Emirates FA Cup and gives this very special tournament exclusive weekends in an increasingly busy calendar.

“The new schedule ensures the magic of the Cup is protected and enhanced, while working for the whole of the English game. The longer summer period also allows a much-needed player break before the start of the next season.”

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FA Cup replays are often a great source of revenue for a number of non-league clubs and the decision has not gone down well with all supporters.

One user posted: “Disgusting that you ‘support’ grassroots but cancel replays. This is massive for non league teams when they get a draw. As usual only supporting your Premier League teams.”

Another added: “Some clubs need the money and they scrap replays! Madness.”

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