January 27, 2015

This is why the FA Cup is the best

by Dan Bilicki In: Soccer

It’s not every week that you see both Chelsea and Manchester City lose.

In fact, it hasn’t happened the same week yet this season. Heck, it’s pretty rare if both of those teams drop points in the same gameweek.

What’s even rarer? Seeing the top two teams in the Premier League lose to teams that aren’t even in England’s top tier.

Chelsea lost to League One’s Bradford City and City lost to League Championship’s Middlesborough. Even worse: They both lost on their home fields.

Even, even worse: They had most of their star players playing.

How does something like that even happen? The odds of this double happening, according to William Hill bookies, was 285-1.

It’s results like this that make the biggest tournament in the world also the best. The fact that these lower league teams can slay European goliaths is truly inspiring. This result will be one that Bradford City fans treasure for years.

In a single-knockout tournament like the FA Cup, all you need is to be better than your opponent for 90 minutes – and that’s what happened here.

And the Blues and Citizens weren’t the only Premier League side to suffer defeat in the fourth round of the FA Cup either; Southampton, Tottenham and Swansea were bounced as well, all losing to teams lower than them in the standings and, in Swansea’s case, to League Championship’s Blackburn Rovers.

Manchester United and Liverpool didn’t do well either, both being held to 0-0 draws against inferior competition.

It’s these types of upsets that make the FA Cup thrilling and that’s one of the big reasons why I’ve come not dread Cup weekends any more – which is really saying something considering how low regard the tournament is usually held in the eyes of Premier League fans.

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