Peterborough United Football Club are dismayed at the decision taken by the FA and the Premier League to change the format of the Emirates FA Cup, including the confirmation that replays will be scrapped from the first round proper. 

Prior to the release of today’s statement from the FA there had been no recent communication nor consultation with EFL clubs, National League clubs or grassroots clubs who value the competition as a key source of income as well as an opportunity to create lifelong experiences for supporters. The Club believe that the decisions made appear to have placed no importance of the essence of the Emirates FA Cup, in that the competition is famed worldwide as a platform which creates moments of magic that transcend generations. 

We believe the Emirates FA Cup achieves this largely down to the existing format and opportunities for David vs Goliath clashes, the promise of a replay is a large part of the dreams which are created and believed in by clubs, players, and fans alike year in year out. Simply creating a cup competition that suits the upper end of the Premier League completely goes against the historic beauty of the competition. 

The Club have sought immediate consultation from the EFL and call upon both the governing body and fellow clubs to produce a coordinated response. The power of our voices together should be used to apply the correct pressure to both the FA and the Premier League to retract their decision to avoid a devastating fall out within the football pyramid. Ignoring the major proportion of clubs who these decisions will affect is an incomprehensible methodology for strategy implementation. 

We as a Club would urge the FA to suspend any changes immediately until all clubs have been consulted and outcomes can be achieved that support the majority, not the minority, in terms of the competition’s participants.