It seems that hardly a year goes by that the BBC, and radio 5live in particular, do not feel the pressing need to assess the value of the FA Cup.
Shows with the narrative “has the FA Cup lost it’s magic?” feel like an annual occurrence.
The explosion of popularity enjoyed by the Champions League has ensured that children in parks and playgrounds no longer wish to emulate the actions of Ben Watson; Wigan’s FA Cup hero, in the same manner they did for Ricky Villa in the 80’s.
Now it is far more fashionable to ape the more glamourous actions of Messi, Neymar, Ibrahimović or Lewandowski. But does this mean that the FA Cup has been rendered a gaudy trinket? Of course not.
Any club and their fans would be delighted with a domestic trophy to their name, and the further down the footballing pyramid you travel the more fervent the desire.
For Leeds United the desire to regain a semblance of their former glories is almost palpable, over a decade spent shuffling in the lower divisions has meant that a younger generation will not fully realise what an enormous club the Yorkshire side are.
Nestled firmly in mid table and with the vibrant circus that is Giorgio Cellino, a constant hum of distracting background noise, it looks as though a run at the play-off positions will once again prove to be beyond them. For new manager Steve Evans, a lengthy spell in the FA Cup will enhance not only his own rancid reputation but also that of a club that looks as though it will never again display its once illustrious sheen.
To achieve that however, Leeds must overcome fellow Championship battlers Rotherham. Saturdays 3pm kick-off will resemble the old channel 4 show wife swap, with both outfits containing the others previous gaffer.
The detailed knowledge both managers have over the opposition could prove to provide an intriguing, if slightly cagey, affair.
While Leeds look secure in their current Championship surroundings, Rotherham are a side perilously close to the relegation zone, a superior goal difference to Bristol City providing the only buffer. You wonder if the financial difficulties a relegation would impose, means that Rotherham will see the cup as a distraction, or will they hope a run in the Cup will help generate a run of fine form?
Leeds may opt to give a debut to new loan signing Mustapha Cayarol, who does his best work in wide areas. Influencial midfielder Alex Mowatt could make a timely recovery from injury.
Rotherham will be without midfielder Lee Frecklington and defenders Farrend Rawson and Richard Wood.
After such a lengthy spell far from football’s brightest spotlight Leeds and their supporters will be hoping a lengthy cup run will be just the hint needed to remind folk just how big they are. To do that however they will need to make it into the 4th round, something they have only managed once in the last 5 years.
Silvestri, Coyle, Bellusci, Cooper, Taylor, Byram, Bridcutt, Murphy, Carayol, Antenucci, Doukara