The ‘giant-killing’ FA Cup is no longer such a football fairytale | Matthew Engel

Football loves a fairytale – especially if it involves an underdog and the FA Cup. But the reality is rather murkier

In an ever-changing game in an ever-changing world, there is something wonderfully reassuring about the FA Cup. Even its language has a quasi-liturgical permanence. Every year the football writers tell us about the “romance” and “magic” of the cup, which is “a great leveller”. Feats of “giant-killing” are performed against “goliaths” by “minnows”, a word first identified by The Guardian as a cliche in 1961. (Quite how minnows are meant to do this is unclear; food poisoning, presumably.)

And these ritual incantations have had a fine old workout these past few weeks, even before minnows Lincoln beat goliaths Burnley to become the first non-league team since 1914 to reach the tournament’s last eight. Whatever happens next, the 9,000 Lincoln supporters allotted tickets for the next game at Arsenal on 11 March will have a splendid day out. Beating Arsenal? That would be a “fairytale”.

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Source: Football News
Link : The ‘giant-killing’ FA Cup is no longer such a football fairytale | Matthew Engel

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