Paul Simpson says it is wrong that FA Cup replays are being scrapped.

And the Carlisle United manager says the move is further evidence of the Premier League wielding its huge power over the domestic game.

It was announced yesterday that replays from the first round proper onwards would be abolished, starting from next season.

The Football Association and Premier League claim the move will help “strengthen” the competition whilst admitting it was influenced by the impact on the calendar by expanded UEFA competitions.

The move has drawn criticism from a host of leading figures at EFL club amid suggestions the lower levels were not consulted enough about the changes, with League Two club Tranmere Rovers issuing a statement describing the scrapping of replays as "disgraceful", claiming there was "no consultation" with EFL and non-league clubs.

The Wirral club also claimed that FA Council members were not consulted. The News & Star has invited Carlisle United director John Nixon, who represents the EFL on the FA Council, to comment. Nixon is a former chair of the FA Cup committee.

United's supporters' trust CUOSC yesterday issued a statement criticising the move and expressing "concern" over an apparent lack of consultation.

Blues manager Simpson said the first he knew about the developments was when told by the News & Star at his weekly press conference yesterday afternoon - and his initial reaction was not favourable.

News and Star: Paul Simpson says the decision to scrap replays is wrongPaul Simpson says the decision to scrap replays is wrong (Image: Barbara Abbott)

“I think it’s been talked about for a while – and personally I don’t think it’s right, that’s just my view on it,” said Simpson.

“The FA Cup, for me, is the best competition in the world. I even think it’s better than Champions League; that’s my personal view because I’ve never been fortunate to be involved in Champions League.

“I don’t see why we keep tinkering with it. The FA Cup has been a brilliant competition since the year it was formed.

“I don’t know why we keep messing about with it. For me the replay is a big part of smaller clubs making revenue, giving them an opportunity.

“It’s disappointing. But we never got consulted, or I certainly didn’t. But I think it’s a sign that the Premier League make all the rules, they’re the ones who’ve got the money and money makes stronger decisions…”

The FA say the changes to the cup would be for a minimum of six seasons. Currently, there are no replays from the fifth round stage onwards.

Simpson said the rationale behind the decision had not come across his desk as an EFL manager prior to the announcement.

“I’ll be honest, I don’t know where the conversations were – it certainly didn’t come to me,” he said.

“Maybe administration have made that decision. I don’t know the rationale behind doing it, don’t know the reasons, I don’t want to get drawn into having a go at people because I don’t know the rationale for it.

“The nature of it is us clubs just have to accept these decisions and get on with it.”