Arsenal Donate £50,000 To Sutton United After Their Heroic FA Cup Defeat

The magic of the cup

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It's rare any story involving the words 'football' and 'money' makes you feel like anything other than kicking the cat, but there are exceptions.

Arsenal football club has donated £50,000 to their vanquished non-league foes Sutton United to help them build new classrooms.

The gesture emerged after the Gunners ended the National League side's unlikely run to the Fifth Round of the FA Cup with a not always entirely comfortable 0-2 victory at the Gander Green Lane – a fixture that had already earned the South London club around £1million.

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In a modern game held to ransom by mega TV money and the pragmatic need prioritise Premier League survival, the FA Cup has become a diminished quantity in recent decades. But adventures like this one are a reminder of the much cherished 'romance of the cup' – the fact that, in theory, a club with a 5,013 capacity (765 seated) could win the oldest football cup in the world.

Sutton FC manager Paul Doswell applauds the crowd after his team's FA Cup tie with Arsenal
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That wasn't to be for Sutton United, but thanks to their unlikely run and Arsenal's generosity – whether or not it depended on avoiding an upset or not – means much needed improvements can be made to their infrastructure.

"The reality is that Arsenal have been superb all the way through this," manager Paul Doswell said in the aftermath of the match.

"We think they're going to help us with the classroom, that's what we're trying.

"It's going to go into the community fund and they've promised us £50,000 and that will buy two classrooms.

"That is an amazing gesture from them and one we're very thankful for."