9 facts you did not know about the FA Cup

9 facts you did not know about the FA Cup

Eric Munene • 10:08 - 18.05.2024

The FA Cup is the oldest football tournament, having been first played in 1871, and there have been memorable moments over the years but what makes this competition unique?

The FA Cup has captured the imagination of fans across the globe, what with the upsets and dramatic results witnessed every year.

This season's competition has not been an exception with the recent 3-3 draw between Manchester United and Coventry, when the Championship side came from 3-0 to nearly reaching the final, among the highlights.

The magic of the FA Cup will continue on Saturday 25 May when United face cross-town rivals Manchester City in the final with Pep Guardiola's men keen to defend their crown. Ahead of the final, here are some 10 interesting facts about the FA Cup.

The oldest football competition

There are only five actual FA Cup trophies and that the competition is officially the oldest football competition ever. The first match was played in London in 1871.

Kettering town FA goal record

The most FA cup goals have been scored by Kettering Town. Despite the team never making it past the fourth round of the competition, Kettering town have managed to score 912 goals.

Record winners Arsenal

In total, 43 different teams have won the competition. Arsenal hold the record for the most titles, having won it 14 times.

Trophy branding

The FA Cup trophy is branded with the colour of the team that holds it as champions. On the day of the final, either side of the trophy is branded with the colours of the teams battling it out at that stage. At the final whistle, the branding of the losing team is removed and the winners have their ribbons on both ends.

Special Wigan

Wigan Athletics are the only team to have ever won the FA Cup and gotten relegated from top flight in the same season. This record first was established in 2013 when Roberto Martinez's side stunned Manchester City to win the FA Cup, days after suffering Premier League relegation.

Clutch player Didier Drogba

Fun fact for Chelsea fans, only Didier Drogba has scored in four different FA Cup finals. The Ivory Coast striker scored the winning goal in the 2007 final against Manchester United (1-0), was on target as Chelsea beat Everton 2-1 in 2009, netted the only goal as the Blues defended their title against Portsmouth in 2010 and was on target for Chelsea in a 2-1 win against Liverpool in 2012.

First red card

Since the first game was played in 1871, the first red card was shown 113 years later to Kevin Moran in 1985 when he was playing for Manchester United.

Fastest goal

The fastest goal was scored by Louis Saha in 2009 against Chelsea. The French striker, then playing for Everton scored after just 25 seconds. Despite this desirable record, they lost 2-1 to the Blues.

Longest holders

Portsmouth have the distinction of being the football club which has held the FA Cup trophy for the longest uninterrupted period - seven years. Portsmouth had defeated Wolverhampton Wanderers 4–1 in the 1939 FA Cup Final and were awarded the trophy as 1938–39 FA Cup winners. But with the outbreak of World War II in September 1939, the regular Football League and FA Cup competitions for the 1939–40 season were cancelled for the duration of the war.