FSF launches 'Save Our F.A.Cup!' online petition

Last updated : 21 February 2005 By Chris Parry
The FSF, to which both the Arsenal Football Supporters' Club (AFSC) and Arsenal Independent Supporters' Association are affiliated, as well as many individual Gooners, was in touch with the FA as soon as press coverage broke on the proposals.

Commenting, FSF development officer Steven Powell, himself a Gooner, said, “It's difficult to believe that the FA would even seriously entertain such an idea. The FA has consistently said it want to promote and defend the FA Cup and its traditions. How is moving the Final to a Wednesday night or doing away with replays going to do that?”

Some of my greatest memories as an Arsenal supporter are of the four replays against Sheffield Wednesday in 1979 and the three semi-final replays against Liverpool in 1980. It's still painful to think of the semi-final replay against United in 1999. Painful as it is however, anybody who was there will never forget the drama, the missed Bergkamp penalty, the Keane sending off, the offside Anelka goal and, of course THAT goal that decided it (God, STILL so painful. Why oh why, did you play that loose pass Paddy?). What an irony that one of the greatest semi-final replays of all time was in all probability the last semi-final replay of all time.

“Replays have already been restricted too much. At least the semi-finals and final are always on neutral territory. To abolish them in the fifth round and quarter-finals would mean the venue for extra time and penalties would be decided on the luck of the draw. More importantly it would drive another stake through the heart of the FA Cup.

“The FA needs to wake up and smell the coffee. It says it wants to defend and promote the FA Cup and its traditions. Its time for the Soho Square set to start walking the walk instead of just talking the talk. Arsenal fans who, like me, want to defend the very best of the FA Cup can sign the on-line petition by logging on to the FSF website at:


“Those Arsenal supporters signing the petition will receive automatically an e-mail asking them to authenticate their signatures. Once this is done a message will be sent automatically to the FA protesting at the lack of supporter consultation. It only takes a few seconds to sign up. It's time for supporters' voices to be heard.”