Most of you, my readers, will remember Sutton Utd’s amazing run to the FA Cup fifth round, dispatching Leeds Utd on that Sunday afternoon before taking on Arsenal in a prestigious live Monday evening game, made famous by goalkeeping coach Wayne Shaw’s naive actions over a pie as the Gunners won 2-0.
However, the U’s have rather blotted their name with a rather petulant action this week, over their upcoming FA Cup 4th qualifying round tie at Southern League One West club Paulton Rovers.
The Rovers are some 3 steps below the National League side and to have drawn a big Non League club like must have seemed like a dream come true.
A big crowd, potential for an upset and lots of welcome publicity for the Southern League club all seemed on the cards, and when the BBC came calling to do a live stream of of the match on the BBC Sport website, and offered a little extra cash, well, who wouldn’t say no?
Sutton Utd did though, all because, according to the official statement, manager Paul Doswell thought a breakfast time departure from Gander Green Lane for the lunchtime kickoff, was too much for his players, meaning they would have to leave home at 5 am of earlier.
Sounds a bit lame, if you ask me. However, there might be a deeper reason.
Given the match against Arsenal was covered by the BBC and the images of Wayne Shaw came from their broadcast, perhaps here’s the real reason. Is it all coming back to Pie-Gate?
Given as how Sutton Utd gained so much from the FA Cup, both financially and also through the publicity of beating Leeds Utd and then being the minnows against the might of the Gunners, isn’t it disappointing that when the situations are reversed, they couldn’t act with a little bit of class here towards Paulton Rovers?
To hide behind a thin excuse of the early start and concern for their fans does them no favours either; you could understand it if it meant moving the match by a whole day, but over a couple of hours?
Sorry Sutton, but there’s no way you’re going to look good over this.