Winners of FA Cup final between Manchester City and Watford will not get case of champagne
The winners of this year’s FA Cup will not be awarded a case of champagne out of respect for players’ religious beliefs.
There has been a longstanding tradition that the winning side were welcomed by a case of the alcohol inside the dressing room after the game.
However, the Football Association has taken the decision to stop the practice beginning this season out of respect for religious beliefs that forbid alcohol consumption.
The successful squad will be provided with an alcohol-free substitute so the players can still celebrate in the usual way of spraying their team-mates with the drink.
An FA spokesman said: “Winning teams will be awarded with non-alcoholic ‘champagne’ for their celebrations in all FA competitions, starting from this year’s Emirates FA Cup Final.
“This is to ensure that we are as inclusive as possible to players and communities who may be prohibited from alcohol, as well as any players who are under 18.”
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Watford and Manchester City will compete for this year’s trophy at Wembley on May 18.
Watford midfielder Abdoulaye Doucoure and City players Riyad Mahrez, Benjamin Mendy and Ilkay Gundogan are all Muslim, which forbids alcohol consumption.
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A report in the Daily Mail claims the FA has been proactive in swapping champagne to an alcohol-free substitute and there is not believed to have been any complaints in the past.
The report says: “FA chiefs had considered implementing the change sooner but was concerned that they would be branded as ‘party-poopers’.”
Source: SportsLatest TS