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Suffolk FA announce format of Suffolk Premier Cup to remain the same next season


By Sport Bury


The Suffolk Premier Cup is to remain as a knockout competition for the 2019/20 season.

Stowmarket Town and Felixstowe & Walton United contest one of last season's semi-finals in the Suffolk Premier Cup. The straight knockout-only format will stay in place for next season. Picture: Ben Pooley
Stowmarket Town and Felixstowe & Walton United contest one of last season's semi-finals in the Suffolk Premier Cup. The straight knockout-only format will stay in place for next season. Picture: Ben Pooley

A change in the format of the county's leading cup competition was touted back in May, with Suffolk FA contacting competing clubs to see if there was sufficient support for a Champions’ League-style competition in the forthcoming season.

Of the 17 clubs due to participate in the Suffolk Premier Cup this season, nine clubs were in favour of changing the format to a Champions’ League style competition with group stages.

However, the slim majority was not deemed as a strong enough mandate to enact this proposal. Clubs were also asked to comment on the further proposal for the Champions’ League format to be drawn geographically, but as the first proposal was not carried this will not apply.

Suffolk FA chief executive Richard Neal said: “Following a proposal received by a participating member club, we recognised that by working with the respective leagues there could have been space within the calendar to accommodate the change to the format of the Premier Cup, and with these additional fixtures being Suffolk derbies this alteration to the format may also have further elevated the profile of the Suffolk Premier Cup whilst perhaps also providing opportunity for clubs to generate additional matchday income.

“However, acknowledging the additional commitment required from all parties within clubs, and some teams appreciating the additional time for training or rest which a reduced midweek fixture list has allowed, we were duty-bound to seek the opinion of those clubs who would have been affected by this significant change.

“We were clear from the outset that a notable majority would be required. With only nine of the 17 applicable teams voting in favour of change, this is not a sufficient enough mandate to enact this proposal at this stage.

“We thank the club for their proposal and innovative thinking to ensure the Suffolk Premier Cup remains as relevant as ever. We would be prepared to review this again in the future if warranted.”

AFC Sudbury manager Mark Morsley was a big advocate for a change in format, insisting the addition of more local fixtures would help bring in added revenue to clubs.

Read the thoughts of the AFC boss on the decision to keep the Suffolk Premier Cup format the same in this Thursday's Suffolk Free Press print edition.



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