Sutton United's Jamie Collins scores from the penalty spot
Sutton United's Jamie Collins blasted the Whites for what he perceived to be a lack of respect, when Garry Monk sent out a weakened side to face the South London outfit in the fourth round of the FA Cup last month, during an exclusive interview with the Guardian.
Sutton ended up winning the game 1-0, and progressed through to the fifth round of the world's oldest cup competition, where they were rewarded with a home tie against Premier League giants Arsenal, who they face tonight at Gander Green Lane.
Monk found himself to be the target of heavy criticism following Leeds' cup exit, for fielding a hugely under-strength team against Collins and co, for a game that he obviously underestimated.
And the Sutton centre-back slammed Leeds, along with other clubs in the higher echelons of the game, for failing to show the FA Cup the respect that it deserves, as quoted by the Guardian:
Leeds manager Garry Monk
"To pull Arsenal in the fifth round is what dreams are made of. We hope they put out the strongest team possible because I think we deserve that opportunity. Clubs from the Premier League and Championship have disrespected the competition by putting their kids out for matches. I still don’t understand how players who are that fit and are elite athletes can’t play on a Saturday and then again on a Tuesday night. When we saw the team that Leeds put out against us, we took it as being disrespectful even though we knew it was our best chance of getting through."
In the grand scheme of things, teams such as Leeds will always prioritise the chance of promotion to the Premier League over a good run in the FA Cup.
But for players and teams lower down the footballing hierarchy, the FA Cup is, and always will be, their one chance to gain fame and glory.
And Arsene Wenger will surely not make the same mistake as Garry Monk, when he takes his team to Gander Green Lane for tonight's match.
Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger