Synthetic pitches for FA Cup

FA Cup (File)
FA Cup (File)

London - Synthetic pitches will be allowed in every round of the FA Cup from next season, the English Football Association announced on Monday.

Current rules bar the use of so-called 3G (third generation) surfaces after the first round.

FA general secretary Alex Horne said the rule change had been recommended by the board and wider use of synthetic surfaces would have benefits for the "grassroots football community".

"They are a very useful asset and capable of delivering 50 plus hours per week as compared to a natural turf pitch which can deliver perhaps five hours per week," he said.

"The value of 3G pitches has been clearly demonstrated during the recent wet weather where leagues within the grassroots game have migrated to them to address fixture backlogs."

Artificial surfaces were banned in English professional soccer in 1995 after Queens Park Rangers, Luton Town, Oldham Athletic and Preston North End had used 'plastic' pitches in the 1980s.

The FA said there were around 600 good quality artificial grass pitches in England used for training and development and they were looking at plans to get more delivered in the long-term.

Voting Booth
What is your favourite sport to watch on TV?
Please select an option Oops! Something went wrong, please try again later.
Results
Rugby
44% - 5736 votes
Cricket
11% - 1424 votes
Football
19% - 2421 votes
Athletics
2% - 295 votes
Boxing
1% - 115 votes
Cycling
2% - 292 votes
Golf
5% - 635 votes
Motorsport
8% - 1024 votes
Tennis
3% - 404 votes
Water sports
1% - 112 votes
American sports
1% - 125 votes
MMA / WWE / UFC
3% - 369 votes
Vote