Date: 27th July 2016 at 4:29pm
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The Football Association have confirmed that if IFAB approval is given, the FA Cup in 2016/17 will feature four substitutes for the quarter final, semi final and final stages of the competition.

IFAB – The International Football Association Board, not the Thunderbirds – are carrying out a global study (apparently) looking at the introduction of a fourth substitute should a game hit extra time, and the FA Cup will be the trial if the plan is approved.

This suggestion has already been trialled once in this summer’s Copa America tournament and it means basically that if all three substitutes have already been used and a game enters extra time – a fourth will be allowed.


It follows on from the earlier announcement that the quarter final stage will now be a sudden death format, removing the need for replays to aide the ‘congested’ fixture list that’s of course to blame for all England’s international woes.

FA chief executive Martin Glenn told

‘The Emirates FA Cup is renowned for its great history and tradition but, as the game`s governing body, it is important The FA continues to look at how it can further add to the drama and spectacle of a competition loved by millions around the world. With The Cup now adopting a straight knockout format from the quarter finals onwards, the introduction of a fourth substitute in extra time will bring extra intrigue and interest.’


‘Also, from a technical point of view, it will be interesting to see how managers use the chance to make an additional substitution in such high-profile games and the impact it has on the final result. Player welfare and being mindful of the number of games people play at the elite level has also been a consideration.’

With substitute benches being increased to seven, it was only a matter of time before at least one additional substitute started to creep in.