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Alan Green: Another FA faux-pas as clubs face long journey to Wembley

Has the Football Association never heard of ‘hot balls’?

Why didn’t someone have the decency to rig the FA Cup semi-final draw and make sure the final had the opportunity to stage a Manchester derby? With respect, that’s surely what everyone outside of Bolton and Stoke would have wished for.

Anyway, we’re still able to focus on another FA faux-pas: this business of staging the semis at Wembley because they need to claw back the outrageous cost of building the stadium in the first place.

Stoke is the ‘nearest’ of the participating clubs: a mere 154 miles from the venue. So that’s a round trip of over 300 miles. How can that make sense for fans in these troubled economic times? Bolton v Stoke was made for Old Trafford.

Worse: try to imagine the security implications of United and City fans traveling together to London. Well, there might be some ‘banter’ on the train journey down: what price mayhem on the way back, whoever wins?

Belfast Telegraph