FA to scrap FA Cup replays, announces other FA Cup changes

Julian Miller
By: Julian Miller
21/04/2024
EPL Tips, Predictions & News
EPL News
FA gets rid of FA Cup replays and changes FA Cup final date

The FA’s changes have been criticised for being too in favour of the Premier League and damaging to lower league clubs. 

News Insights

  • The English FA announced a new FA Cup format on Thursday.
  • There will be no FA Cup replays from the 2024/25 season and beyond.
  • The EPL will provide an additional £33 million for grassroots football.
  • The EPL will provide an additional £33 million for grassroots football.

The English Football Association have announced sweeping changes to the FA Cup format for the 2024/25 season and beyond. The biggest change is the elimination of FA Cup replays beyond the first round. Other changes include moving all FA Cup matches to the weekends, creating FA Cup exclusive match days with no EPL matches, and moving the date of the cup final to the second-to-last week of the English domestic soccer calendar. 
 
The FA’s changes have been widely criticised as being too in favour of the Premier League clubs and damaging to lower league sides. The EPL have promised to commit up to an additional £33 million ($63.8 million AUD) for grassroots football as a result of these changes.  

No more FA Cup replays

Currently, if you draw against your opponent in the FA Cup before the Fifth Round, you will play an additional fixture to decide the winner of this knockout tie.  
 
These FA Cup replays have been an essential part of the competition and a way to provide extra funding to lower league sides since the very first FA Cup over 100 years ago. However, over time the tournament has been gradually slimmed down and replays have been cut or limited. 
 
As recently as the 2017/18 season, there were replays in the Fifth Round. Now, FA Cup replays have been scrapped altogether. The FA’s new changes will eliminate replays from the FA Cup proper, meaning from the First Round and beyond.  
 
In the 2023/24 FA Cup, there were 25 FA Cup replay matches played. Seven involved Premier League sides. Three of those seven involved ties between two Premier League clubs.  

Other FA Cup changes 

In addition to scrapping FA Cup replays, the English FA have announced major changes to the competition’s schedule.  
 
All FA Cup matches will now be played on weekends. Fourth, Fifth, and Quarter-Final matches will be played on exclusive match days with no EPL matches.  
 
The Final has been moved from its traditional place at the end of the season to the second-to-last weekend before the end of the Premier League season. Like with the Fourth, Fifth, and Quarter-Final matches, no EPL matches will be played on the day of the Final. 
 
In support of these changes, the Premier League have promised to provide an additional £33 million ($63.8 million AUD) for grassroots football to the FA per season as a result of these changes.  

“Absolute disgrace,” say fans 

The changes announced by the FA have been widely criticised by fans of lower league soccer and beyond for catering to the wishes of the Premier League and ignoring the demands of lower level clubs. 
 
By getting rid of replays, the FA is eliminating an extra source of income for lower league clubs who manage to avoid defeat against bigger teams in the first match, the critics say.  
 
The scheduling changes have also been criticised as simply giving a way for the Premier League to sneak in a winter break during the Fourth, Fifth, and Quarter-Final stages, while EFL clubs have to deal with a congested schedule of 46 games or more. Moving matches to the weekend also gets rid of the midweek ‘magic of the Cup,’ some say. 

The 2023/24 FA Cup is still underway. Man City and Chelsea face off this weekend along with Man Utd vs. Coventry City. Read the betting odds and best places to bet on these big matches here at BettingTop10.

Best Betting Sites in Australia

#
Betting Site
Features
Visit
4
PUNTERS' FAVORITE
29
Best App