Beginning in August, the competition proceeds as a knockout tournament throughout, consisting of twelve rounds, a semi-final and then a final, in May.
A system of byes ensures clubs above Level 9 and 10 enter the competition at later stages. There is no seeding , the fixtures in each round being determined by a random draw.
Prior to the quarter-finals, fixtures ending in a tie are replayed once only. The next six rounds are the "proper" rounds where all clubs are in one draw.
Entrants from the bottom two levels 9 and 10 begin the competition in the Extra Preliminary Round. Clubs from higher levels are then added in later rounds, as per the table below.
The qualifying rounds are regionalised to reduce the travel costs for smaller non-league sides. The first and second proper rounds were also previously split into Northern and Southern sections, but this practice was ended after the —98 competition.
The final is normally held the Saturday after the Premier League season finishes in May. Thereafter, the draw for each subsequent round is not made until after the scheduled dates for the previous round, meaning that in the case of replays, clubs will often know their future opponents in advance.
The draw for each of the proper rounds is broadcast live on television, usually taking place at the conclusion of live coverage of one of the games of the previous round.
Public interest is particularly high during the draw for the third round, which is where the top-ranked teams are added to the draw. In rounds up to and including the Fourth Round Proper, fixtures resulting in a draw after normal time go to a replay , played at the venue of the away team, at a later date; if that replay is still tied, the winner is settled by a period of extra time , and if still necessary, a penalty shootout.
Since —17 , ties have been settled on the day from the quarter-finals onwards, using extra time and penalties. From —19 , Fifth Round ties are also settled by extra time and penalties.
Until —91 , further replays would be played until one team was victorious. Some ties took as many as six matches to settle; in their campaign, Fulham played a total of 12 games over six rounds, which remains the most games played by a team to reach a final.
This led to penalty shoot-outs being introduced, the first of which came on 26 November when Rotherham United eliminated Scunthorpe United. From —81 to —99 , the semi-finals went to extra time on the day if the score after 90 minutes was a draw.
If the score was still level after extra time, the match would go to a replay. Replays for the semi-finals were scrapped for — , the last semi-final to go into a replay was in —99 when Manchester United beat Arsenal 2—1 after extra time.
The first game had ended in a 0—0 draw. The initial tie finished 1—1 but the Royal Engineers won the replay 2—0 in normal time.
The replay saw Arsenal win the FA Cup, 2—1 after extra time. The original game at Old Trafford ended in a 1—1 draw, while Manchester United won the replay at the Boleyn Ground , 2—1.
This European place applies even if the team is relegated or is not in the English top flight. FA Cup winners enter the Europa League at the group stage.
Fixtures in the 12 rounds of the competition are usually played at the home ground of one of the two teams. The semi-finals and final are played at a neutral venue — the rebuilt Wembley Stadium since and respectively.
In the matches for the twelve competition rounds, the team who plays at home is decided when the fixtures are drawn — simply the first team drawn out for each fixture.
Occasionally games may have to be moved to other grounds due to other events taking place, security reasons or a ground not being suitable to host popular teams.
In the event of a draw , the replay is played at the ground of the team who originally played away from home. In the days when multiple replays were possible, the second replay and any further replays were played at neutral grounds.
The clubs involved could alternatively agree to toss for home advantage in the second replay. The semi-finals have been played exclusively at the rebuilt Wembley Stadium since , one year after it opened and after it had already hosted a final in For the first decade of the competition, the Kennington Oval was used as the semi-final venue.
In the period between this first decade and the reopening of Wembley, semi-finals were played at high-capacity neutral venues around England; usually the home grounds of teams not involved in that semi-final, chosen to be roughly equidistant between the two teams for fairness of travel.
The top three most used venues in this period were Villa Park in Birmingham 55 times , Hillsborough in Sheffield 34 times and Old Trafford in Manchester 23 times.
The original Wembley Stadium was also used seven times for semi-final, between and the last held there , but not always for fixtures featuring London teams.
In , both were held at the Millennium Stadium. In the FA took the decision to permanently use the new Wembley for semi-finals to recoup debts in financing the new stadium.
The final has been played at the rebuilt Wembley Stadium since it opened, in Prior to rebuilding, the final was hosted by the original Wembley Stadium since it opened in being originally named the Empire Stadium.
One exception to this 78 year series of Empire Stadium finals including five replays was the replay between Leeds and Chelsea, held at Old Trafford in Manchester.
In the 51 years prior to the Empire Stadium opening, the final including 8 replays was held in a variety of locations, predominantly in London, and mainly at the Kennington Oval and then Crystal Palace.
It was played 22 times at The Oval the inaugural competition in , and then all but two times until After The Oval, Crystal Palace hosted 21 finals from to , broken up by four replays elsewhere.
The other venues used sparingly in this period were all outside of London, as follows:. The FA permitted artificial turf 3G pitches in all rounds of the competition from the —15 edition and beyond.
The trophy comes in three parts — the cup itself, plus a lid and a base. There have been two designs of trophy in use, but five physical trophies have been presented.
It was stolen in and never recovered, and so was replaced by an exact replica, used until The FA decided to change the design after the winners, Manchester United, made their own replica, leading the FA to realise they did not own the copyright.
This third replica, first used in , was built heavier to withstand the increased handling. The name of the winning team is engraved on the silver band around the base as soon as the final has finished, in order to be ready in time for the presentation ceremony.
At Cardiff the presentation was made on a podium on the pitch. The tradition of presenting the trophy immediately after the game did not start until the final ; after the first final in the trophy was not presented to the winners, Wanderers, until a reception held four weeks later in the Pall Mall Restaurant in London.
Because the naval city of Portsmouth was a primary strategic military target for German Luftwaffe bombing, the FA Cup trophy was actually taken ten miles to the north of Portsmouth, to the nearby Hampshire village of Lovedean , and there it resided in a quaint thatched roof country pub called The Bird in Hand for the seven years of the war.
Just over 60 years later, 80 year old career criminal Henry Harry James Burge claimed to have committed the theft, confessing to a newspaper, with the story being published in the Sunday Pictorial newspaper on 23 February He claimed to have carried out the robbery with two other men, although when discrepancies with a contemporaneous report in the Birmingham Post newspaper the crime pre-dated written police reports in his account of the means of entry and other items stolen, detectives decided there was no realistic possibility of a conviction and the case was closed.
Burge claimed the cup had been melted down to make counterfeit half-crown coins, which matched known intelligence of the time, in which stolen silver was being used to forge coins which were then laundered through betting shops at a local racecourse, although Burge had no past history of forgery in a record of 42 previous convictions for which he had spent 42 years in prison.
He had been further imprisoned in for seven years for theft from cars. Released in , he died in The redesigned trophy first used in was larger at A smaller, but otherwise identical, replica was also made by Fattorini, the North Wales Coast FA Cup trophy, and is contested annually by members of that regional Association .
The replica was made by Toye, Kenning and Spencer. The replica was made by Thomas Lyte , handcrafted in sterling silver over hours.
A weight increase to increase durability has taken it to 6. Each club in the final receives 40 winners or runners-up medals to be distributed among players, staff, and officials.
Since the start of the —95 season , the FA Cup has been sponsored. Sponsorship deals run for four years, though — as in the case of E.
ON — one-year extensions may be agreed. From to , Umbro supplied match balls for all FA Cup matches. Mitre took over for the —19 season, beginning a three-year partnership with the FA.
The possibility of unlikely victories in the earlier rounds of the competition, where lower ranked teams beat higher placed opposition in what is known as a "giant killing", is much anticipated by the public.
Such upsets are considered an integral part of the tradition and prestige of the competition, and the attention gained by giant-killing teams can be as great as that for winners of the cup.
One analysis of four years of FA Cup results showed that it was The probability drops to Since the creation of The Football League, Tottenham Hotspur is the only non-league "giant-killer" to win the Cup, taking the FA Cup with a victory over reigning league runners-up Sheffield United: Only two other actual non-League clubs have even reached the final since the founding of the League: Sheffield Wednesday in champions of the Football Alliance, a rival league which was already effectively the Second Division, which it formally became in — Wednesday being let straight into the First Division , and Southampton in and in which years they were also Southern League champions, proving the strength of that league: St James Park Attendance: Morecambe 4 v F.
Halifax Town 5 10 November Morecambe 4 0—0 F. Halifax Town 5 Morecambe Halifax Town 5 1—0 Morecambe 4 Halifax Southend United 3 Crawley The Hive Stadium Attendance: Solihull Moors 5 Blackpool London Road Stadium Attendance: Stadium of Light Attendance: University of Bolton Stadium Attendance: Pride Park Stadium Attendance: Newcastle United 1 Blackburn City of Manchester Stadium Attendance: Retrieved 20 June Retrieved 22 October Blackpool v Arsenal, Woking v Watford".
Retrieved 6 January Retrieved 7 January Retrieved 28 January National League National , North , South. Summer transfers Winter —19 transfers Summer transfers.
Retrieved from " https: Articles needing additional references from June All articles needing additional references.
City face Burnley in the FA Cup on Saturday, with Guardiola desperate to remain in all four competitions as he guns to make reaching finals a habit.
The FA Cup could provide drama and upsets in the fourth round this weekend. Newport pulled off a huge shock last time out when they saw off Leicester and have Middlesbrough in their sights.
Chelsea face Manchester United in final repeat. Dan Sparkes hits equaliser for non-league Barnet. See who Man City and Chelsea face next.
List becomes FA Cup hero to seal progression. The toast of Kent! Newcastle crash out of the FA Cup at the hands of Watford The essence of the FA Cup: Victim of the Millwall knife thug: Chelsea Sheffield Wednesday: Marko Arnautovic madness makes me sick Crystal Palace Tottenham: Wickham scores on long-awaited return.
FA Cup fourth round. Manchester City Burnley: Brighton West Brom: Seagulls held to a goalless stalemate. Middlesbrough Newport County: Last minute Matthew Dolan goal seals replay.
Gray and Success fire Hornets into fifth round. Matt Doherty rescues a replay in stoppage time. Accrington Stanley Derby: League One promotion chasers earn replay.
Follow all the FA Cup fourth round action. Wallace hits injury-time winner to secure upset. Arsenal Manchester United: Eight in a row for Ole Gunnar Solskjaer.
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