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MUFC can't face third or fourth round Cup replay next season
By Chris O'Brien
August 22 2020


No replays for 2020/21

FA Cup replays have been scrapped altogether for the 2020/21 season, as football authorities look to ease pressure on the calendar amid a new season heavily curtailed by the Covid-19 pandemic.
It means any FA Cup ties that Manchester United are involved in next season must be decided on the day - with extra-time and penalties to be used if necessary. However, this was already the case from the fifth round onwards - so will only potentially impact United at round three and four. 

The competition will get underway with the extra preliminary round on 1 September, while the first round proper will take place on 7 November.
 
Clubs squaring off for replays always seemed a likely target as football's authorities desperately try to map out a workable schedule amid a curtailed season, caused by the devastating coronavirus pandemic and its impact on almost all facets of life and normality.
 
Replays for the FA Cup final were scrapped in time for United's successful 1999 final - though one had not been required since 1993. Meanwhile, semi-final replays were scrapped from the following season. Quarter-final replays were abolished from 2017, while fifth round replays were shelved two years later, for 2019. It remains to be seen whether replays for qualification and the early proper rounds will be reinstated at all.

United - like all clubs in the top two divisions of English football - enter at the third round stage, with those matches scheduled for the to start on the 9 January 2021, which is consistent with round three's usual spot in the football calendar.
 
Prize money has been reduced for the new campaign as a consequence of the financial implications of Covid-19. United would scoop £82,000 for winning a third round tie, £90,000 for a fourth-round tie victory, £180,000 for winning in round five, £360,000 for a quarter-final triumph, £900,000 for a semi-final victory and £1.8million for lifting the showpiece trophy. There's a further £900,000 for the runners-up, and an extra £450,000 for losing semi-finalists.

Manchester United are one of 737 clubs accepted into the Emirates-sponsored 2020/21 competition. Ole Gunnar Solskjaer's men saw their Cup dreams dashed against Chelsea in the semi-final last time out - having beaten Wolverhampton Wanderers, Tranmere Rovers, Derby County and Norwich City on their way to the final four.