Manchester United legend Gary Neville is in agreement with Liverpool over major FA Cup rule change

Manchester United legend Gary Neville and Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp are in agreement over major change in FA Cup rule

Manchester United legend Gary Neville has agreed with Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp that FA Cup replays should be permanently scrapped. The FA is reported to be planning to phase out replays, which are still used in the third and fourth rounds of the competition and can be worth thousands of pounds to lower-league clubs.

Cambridge United earned more than £1 million in 2015 after forcing Manchester United to a replay at Old Trafford, and other teams followed suit, collecting rich sums as a result of their heroic performances.

Replays were originally held at every round of the FA Cup; however, they have not been held since the fifth round of the competition in 2018/19 to minimise the number of fixtures that clubs play in each season.

Gary Neville agrees with the FA Cup rule change
Gary Neville agrees with the FA Cup rule change

This could also mean the end of the two-legged Carabao Cup semi-finals. Many see these changes as necessary because European football is changing next season, with more teams competing in the early stages of the Champions League and Europa League.

In his opinion, removing FA Cup replays is the right way to go, Neville said on The Overlap’s Stick to Football Podcast:

“They have to take replays away in the FA Cup. They have them in the early rounds, but they have to get rid of them. It’s all or nothing.”

“I like to think I talk on lower clubs, and they can get a home draw and if you think about a lower club getting a home draw, and it has to finish that day, you’ve got a chance of a shock. Whereas if it goes to a replay at a big ground, you get the money but where’s the shock?”

Neville said that he understands why some want to keep them, especially for smaller clubs, but he believes that for the good of the competition, they should be scrapped.

Klopp agrees to the FA Cup decision

Liverpool manager Klopp has also been vocal about this issue, saying:

“The lifelines for small clubs cannot be massive problems for clubs who play every three days. We cannot solve all the problems by playing more games. How often did it happen that a smaller club came through because of this extra game?”

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The Liverpool boss is concerned about the impact on teams with busy schedules. The boss understands that the involvement of money is there but insists on finding a solution. Smaller clubs don’t have to play almost every other day, so the issue happens to the bigger clubs with less gap between their matches.

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