The FA Cup
The FA Cup is the oldest football competition in the world, commencing in 1872 (the Scottish Cup beginning a year later in 1873). As such, its reputation as the sport's premier domestic cup competition extends around the world. Because it involves clubs of all standards playing against each other, there is great scope for "giant-killers" from the lower divisions to eliminate top clubs from the tournament. A record 674 teams entered the FA Cup in 2005-2006. In comparison, the League Cup, a lower prestige English football knockout tournament, can involve only the 92 respective members of the Football League (which organises the competition) and the FA Premier League.
The name "FA Cup" usually refers to the English men's tournament. The equivalent competition for women's teams is the FA Women's Cup. The women's cup has a much lower public profile than the men's, in common with all women's football in England. Many nations also have similar competitions, inspired by this legendary tournament.
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The FA was established, for men only, in 1863 and is the oldest football association in the world. It governs all professional football clubs in England. The FA was instrumental in formulating the rules of the modern game and has a special place in the history of the sport. It is a member of UEFA and FIFA, and holds a permanent seat on the International Football Association Board (IFAB). Unlike other national football associations, it does not take the national name (i.e.'English') in its title (compare with Scottish Football Association, for example).
All of England's professional football clubs must be members of the Football Association. The FA is responsible for the appointment of the management of the England men's and women's national teams, the organization of the FA Cup, the nation's most prestigious cup competition, and is the governing body of the FA Premier League (The Football League, England's second tier league, consisting of The Championship, League One and League Two, is self-governing).
The FA plays a major role in the development of English football at the grass roots level, through its continuing support of the amateur game, and organizes the National League System.
The FA's turnover for the year ended 31 December 2004 was £206.1 million, of which £176.9 million came from television rights (mainly the FA Cup and England Internationals) and sponsorship. Its other sources of income include gate receipts from English internationals, payments from FIFA and UEFA relating to England's participation in international competitions, and sundry minor sources of income.  The FA's income does not include the turnover of English football clubs, which are independent businesses. As well as running its own operations the FA chooses five charities each year to which it gives considerable financial support e.g.
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