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FA bemoans packed fixture list after replay slot headache

Football - England Press Conference - The Grove Hotel, Hertfordshire - 16/11/15 FA Chief Executive Officer Martin Glenn during the Press Conference. Action Images via Reuters/John Sibley/Livepic/Files
Football - England Press Conference - The Grove Hotel, Hertfordshire - 16/11/15FA Chief Executive Officer Martin Glenn during the Press Conference. Action Images via Reuters/John Sibley/Livepic/Files

(Reuters) - The Football Association has described the fixture list in England as "overcrowded and untenable" after being forced to schedule an FA Cup fifth round replay between Hull City and Arsenal on March 8, a Champions League night.

The FA said it held "in-depth and exhaustive discussions" with the clubs and European soccer's governing body UEFA before settling on the date that clashes with Champions League ties between Real Madrid at home to Roma and Wolfsburg against Gent.

"The FA recognises that this is not an ideal solution for everyone. However, it does strengthen the case for footballing bodies to work closely together in a positive, collaborative way to resolve the overcrowded and untenable fixture schedule," the FA said in a statement on Friday.

Arsenal were held to a goalless draw by Championship (second-tier) leaders Hull on Sunday. The winners of the replay will take on Watford in the sixth round.

"We would like to thank UEFA for taking the time it has to understand our position on this matter," FA chief executive Martin Glenn said.

(Reporting by Simon Jennings in Bengaluru; Editing by John O'Brien)

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