Do FA Cup fifth-round games go to extra-time and penalties or a replay? | Football

The midweek last-16 ties will all be decided on the night (Picture: Getty Images)

The FA Cup fifth round kicks off this week with non-league Maidstone United in action against Championship side Coventry City – though the format will be a little different from previous rounds.

Although the third and fourth rounds both had replays if matches were not decided in 90 minutes, from the fifth round onwards games will instead go to extra-time and penalties if required.

The Football Association decided to scrap fifth-round replays back in the 2018-19 season as part of a schedule shake-up that saw the introduction of a mid-season break for the first time.

Originally, the change had been intended to start a year later but was brought forward to alleviate fixture congestion, with six of the Premier League sides involved in the fifth round that year still competing in the knockout stages of Europe.

Due to the coronavirus pandemic, replays were then scrapped entirely for two seasons – 2020-21 and 2021-22 – but returned in the early rounds in last year’s competition.

Although the European calendar is slightly less demanding this season, with no English sides taking part in the knockout play-off rounds of the Europa League and Europa Conference League, the fifth round continues to be played as one-off games.

There are also no replays in the quarter-final, semi-final or final, with replays in latter rounds scrapped nearly a decade ago back in 2015.

Maidstone United FA Cup Media Day

Maidstone get the fifth round underway away at Coventry (Picture: Getty)

It may not be long before replays are consigned to the history books entirely, with discussions currently ongoing to reform the English football calendar – largely due to changes to European and international competition schedules.

From next season, the Champions League will feature two extra matches in an extended group stage while a new-look, expanded Club World Cup makes its debut in the summer of 2025.

That is expected to push back the start of the domestic season, while additional international windows from 2026 onwards will concertina the season even further.

With players already being run into the ground and more games constantly getting added to their schedules, the permanent removal of replays looks to be the most likely solution to partially ease their ever-increasing workloads.

Of the 16 teams still left in this year’s competition, only Manchester City, Brighton and Liverpool are also competing in Europe.



When are the FA Cup fifth-round ties?

Monday 26

Coventry vs Maidstone United | 19:45 | ITV4

Tuesday 27

Bournemouth vs Leicester City | 19:30 | iPlayer
Blackburn Rovers vs Newcastle | 19:45 | BBC1
Luton Town vs Manchester City | 20:00 | ITV1

Wednesday 28

Chelsea vs Leeds United | 19:30 | ITV4
Nottingham Forest vs Manchester United | 19:45 | BBC1
Wolves vs Brighton | 19:45 | iPlayer
Liverpool vs Southampton | 20:00 | ITV1

Brighton have been handed a mouth-watering last-16 tie against Roma in the Europa League, Champions League holders City take on minnows Copenhagen and Liverpool have a double header against Sparta Prague.

Coventry and Maidstone kick off the FA Cup fifth round on Monday night, while City travel to Luton Town in the pick of Tuesday’s action. On Wednesday, Chelsea host Leeds, Manchester United travel to Nottingham Forest and Liverpool take on Southampton.



Remaining FA Cup rounds

Quarter-finals: Weekend of 16 March
Semi-finals: Weekend of 20 April
Final: Saturday 25 May

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