The FA Cup's Slow Downfall
By Oliver Maroney
The FA Cup, British footballs' most popular tournament, has received lots of criticism from managers across the English Premier League. English footballs' oldest competition has received comments from Paul Lambert, manager of Aston Villa, about the issue of filling up the already hectic Premier League schedule.
The problem with the FA Cup comes with the value of playing in it. Sure, there is a great benefit when winning the tournament (about £1.8 million pounds), but if you don't win it, finishing with a spot in the Premier League comes to be more beneficial.
The very harsh reality is that Premier League football has rulling over anthing else because of it's financial impact on individual teams. And although the FA Cup is the most storied and exciting tournament of it's kind, financially its only good for the teams outside the Premier League.
The past couple of years we have seen teams like Wigan Athletic, current holders of the FA Cup, who won the tournament and then become relegated just days later. Because it plays during the league season, you see teams in the Premier League pick a starting line-up based on the team's performance in the league and player fitness.
Football is such a business, teams' have to decide which tournament suits them and ones that won't hinder their league success.
It's sad to see English footballs' oldest and most tenured tournament, slowly declining in popularity from managers to fans. As I remember, winning it was once looked at on an equal standing with holding the English Premier League championship.
Much like anything, business is business and money is money, but it would be nice to see the FA cup come back to its original state. After all, there is no other tournament that allows teams from non league sides to play against the Premier League big boys.