The Football Association Challenge Cup, commonly known as the FA Cup, is a knockout cup competition in English football and is the oldest association football competition in the world. The "FA Cup" is run by and named after the Football Association and usually refers to the English men's tournament, although a women's tournament is also held. Its current sponsored name is the FA Cup with Budweiser.
The FA Cup was first held in 1871–72. Entry is open to all teams who compete in the Premier League, the Football League and in steps one to five of the FA National League System, as well as selected teams in step 6. This means that clubs of all standards compete, from the largest clubs in England and Wales down to amateur village teams. The tournament has become known for the possibility for "minnows" from the lower divisions to become "giant-killers" by eliminating top clubs from the tournament and even theoretically winning the Cup, although lower division teams rarely progress beyond the early stages. The qualification rounds and a system of byes mean that the very smallest and very biggest teams almost never meet.
The holders of the FA Cup are Chelsea, who defeated Liverpool 2–1 in the 2012 final for their fourth triumph in six years and seventh overall.
Famous quotes containing the word cup:
“Sisters define their rivalry in terms of competition for the gold cup of parental love. It is never perceived as a cup which runneth over, rather a finite vessel from which the more one sister drinks, the less is left for the others.”
—Elizabeth Fishel (20th century)