Why did Manchester City devalue FA Cup?

The following article is based on my own interpretation of the said events. Any material borrowed from published and unpublished sources has been appropriately referenced. I will bear the sole responsibility for anything that is found to have been copied or misappropriated or misrepresented in the following post.

Sai Ravi Teja Pingali, MBA 2015-17, Vinod Gupta School of Management, IIT Kharagpur


Manchester City manager Pellegrini surprised everyone when he started with six teenagers at Stamford Bridge for their  round of 16 FA Cup tie.Why did he start such a young team against one of their rivals? or Is FA Cup not really that important?

The first is what the performances actually means given the context, particularly Chelsea’s ongoing resurgence. The second is how justifiable Pellegrini’s decisions were, and the third is about the relevance of the FA Cup itself  whether it has long been “devalued” beyond the point of any return.

The irony to all of this was that City’s six teenage starters  actually came out of the game with real credit, especially goal scorer David Faupala. He showed a fine touch in setting up that move to feed Kelechi Iheanacho, and then admirable desire to get in and be first to the return ball to score.

Pellegrini had forewarned City’s travelling fans that he would play a weakened team in the FA Cup after the club failed with attempts to have the fifth-round tie moved forwards from Sunday to allow more time between facing Chelsea and Kiev.Despite the scale of the defeat, Pellegrini was unrepentant for his decision and said: “If we played on Saturday it would have been better for us because we have to play for England in the Champions League on Wednesday, so it is better for England”.
Of course, it is the Champions League or, rather, the ludicrous English regulations that see City unnecessarily play an FA Cup game just three days before an awkward trip to Dynamo Kiev that meant Pellegrini picked such a downscaled side in the first place. He also reminded everyone he only had 13 main squad players fit, so was forced to arrange his team to fit the circumstances.

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