Often Partisan

The Magic of The Cup

On Saturday Birmingham City will entertain our canine (or lupine, depending on which you prefer) rivals from Wolverhampton in the FA Cup. It’s an interesting match, because I think it’s one that will give us an idea of what the future month holds.

There is a bit of debate on the forums of the interwebs about the team that should be put out against Wolves. Many people see the FA Cup as a distraction to our promotion chances in the league; it’s not a competition you’d think we have a chance of winning so why bother? Like Europe, continued participation will only bring about more games (and more postponed fixtures) making the spring an ever more clogged mass of matches.

Of course, the fact we’re playing our rivals is something that should be taken into consideration; after all, who honestly wants us to lose to Wolves at home? For those of us who are unfortunate enough to live or work with them it would be a painful week taking the slings and arrows of banter from the Old Gold and Black faithful after all. Furthermore, no one thought we could win the Carling Cup last year but we did – why should we just bottle it for the sake of it?

There is also the financial aspect: whilst it’s not massive amounts of money, there is prize money to be won. Add in money for being on TV and extra gate receipts (whether home or away) and a run in the FA Cup could be a bit of a financial boon to Blues – not unlike the European run which brought in a much-needed couple of million to Birmingham’s coffers.

The big selection headache for Chris Hughton though revolves around players being cup-tied. Again, it’s not the competition it once was but for a team that is advancing through the rounds a player that is free for them to play in the competition is more worthwhile in signing than one who will sit in the stands, ineligible. To that aim, will Hughton be constricted in who he plays to ensure certain players are at their highest possible value to all clubs? Furthermore, is it worthwhile cup-tying players of high interest who the club wish to hold on to, like Jack Butland? There are also seven slots on the bench, which opens the side up a bit more to maybe a couple of fringe players who can’t get involved in first team duty.

Whilst I don’t subscibe to the view that is a player is out injured they’re automatically about to be sold I will be interested to see if any players are rested due to a “niggle” or an “injury” – particularly players like Jean Beausejour and Liam Ridgewell. I’m also a believer that we should go out to win the game; after all, you never know when you’re going to get an easy run to a Wembley appearance – after all, we weren’t that far away from making the Semis last year. Wouldn’t another trip to North London just be grand after all the uncertainty of recent months?

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11 Responses to “The Magic of The Cup”

  • Flying Doctor says:

    Chris Hughton on WM last night he’s going to rotate the squad for Wolves.

  • bluesbot says:

    another visit to wembley would be absolutely fantastic albeit being wishful thinking – however the better the club does the better chance we have of attracting new owners/investors

  • matt says:

    This will be a reserve team fixture! Only 8000 tickets sold! Good old block eleven will no doubt be singing on there own! KRO!

  • Oldbluenose says:

    bluesbot;, Spot on mate,!!. Upping the profile of our club, would sit well with any possible new owners/investors, as well as bringing in a few extra quid, through gate reciepts/tv monies etc,!!.

  • skareggae72 says:

    We have to draw a line between a)football manager/& b)financial money men.Chris Hughton is the former so he should pick the strongest team he can,regardless of players being cup tied etc,he isnt going to get any of the sale money anyway,so lets go out & beat big mick & his(probable)Wolves reserves.Pick the side you want Chris & not the side which will grab a few more pennies for the financial money men.

  • Ben says:

    Team will be something like;


    I hope its more

    but doubt he will play Hubbins and don’t know wether Wood is eligable to play

  • Barry says:

    While an extra few pennies will no doubt be useful in the short term, I can’t see a long cup run attracting the type of investment we need. First priority is points and as many as possible either to give us an (unlikely) chance of a playoff place or to give us some protection if we are forced into Administration this year. We need to keep focused.

  • Joe says:

    Almajir what’s happened to Wade Elliot any reason he’s not playing?

  • Bluenosejohn says:

    Suspect whatever team we put out will have the game as a higher priority than our struggling Premiership opponents.

  • parkp says:

    I certainly dont believe in weakening the team for a cup competition. The game is all about money and premership football nowadays when in fact, the game is about WINNING TROPHIES. We did that last season and i wouldnt swap the prem for that! As for the 8000 tickets sold, thats something for the Wolves fans to take the piss out of already!

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