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FA Cup third round draw: time, TV channels, and ball numbers

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Tottenham Hotspur will find out who their opponent is in the oldest cup competition in world football.

Chelsea v Manchester United - The Emirates FA Cup Final Photo by Catherine Ivill/Getty Images

Rest is for the dead. The number of competitions Tottenham Hotspur is involved in is about to jump to four as the draw for the third round of the FA Cup is set to be drawn today at 7:30 p.m. UK time (2:30 p.m. ET).

The FA Cup is the world’s oldest association football cup competition, dating all the way back to 1871. It’s considered the “better” of the two English domestic cup competitions because it’s a single-elimination knock-out tournament that features the ENTIRE football pyramid, not just down to League 2 like the League Cup.

The format is pretty simple: dump all the teams into a big hopper, and draw them out randomly (after, of course, warming the Arsenal ball to make sure they’re drawn at home to an easy team). First team drawn is home, second is away. Clubs from the Premier League don’t enter the competition until the third round once some of the non-league clubs have been winnowed away somewhat, so this third round draw is usually the point when the media starts to actually care about it. Preliminary rounds for the FA Cup often start in early August. And of course, the fun part of it is seeing which lower league or non-league clubs make it far in the competition, and seeing some of the David vs. Goliath match-ups that can arise from the random draw.

How to Watch

Time: 2:30 p.m. ET / 7:30 p.m. UK
Channel: BBC One
Twitter: @EmiratesFACup

Tottenham was given ball number 39 out of 64 teams. Here’s a full listing of all the teams that remain in the competition and will be drawn. Those numbers that have more than one team have to face a replay after drawing in the first meeting.

Come on you easy third round matchup!