Are ‘big sides’ cheating fans in the FA Cup?

Sutton United celebrate in the dressing room after beating Leeds yesterday

Sutton United celebrate in the dressing room after beating Leeds yesterday - Credit: PA

There are two non-league sides in this season’s FA Cup Fifth Round for the first time ever - but are the so-called ‘big clubs’ cheating fans by fielding weakened sides in the famous competition?

National League Lincoln City and Sutton United both pulled off famous upsets, seeing off Championship Brighton and Leeds respectively, while Premier League sides Liverpool, Hull and Watford all bowed out.

All the teams who suffered upsets made significant changes to their teams, with Liverpool for example making nine changes before being beaten by Wolves at Anfield.

While many have argued that the number of lower-league sides reaching the latter stages is good for the competition, it has also been suggested that teams are short-changing fans by selecting weaker sides.

Alan Shearer said: “Clubs care about money while fans care about trophies. That’s very unfortunate.


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“It’s just crazy, I don’t understand it. I’m all for bringing kids into the team but not seven or eight of them.”

- What do you think?

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