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10 Teams to Manage to an Inaugural Domestic Cup Competition Win on FM22

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10 Teams to Manage to an Inaugural Domestic Cup Competition Win on FM22

Here are ten clubs to try out this challenge with on FM22.


While some clubs out there have yet to experience the joy of a maiden league championship win, some famous clubs have yet to win even a trophy of any description, let alone a league title.

Therefore, if you are a cup competition enthusiast, this challenge will be right down your street. Of course, longer-term, your objective with these clubs is the same as any FM save; win as much as one possibly can win. However, the first and most important objective is to win a national cup competition open to all league clubs in the country’s football league pyramid (excludes non-league clubs), one which still exists and is not defunct or discontinued.

Sounds down your street? Here are ten clubs to try out this challenge with on FM22.

GD Estoril Praia


The first club to try and win a first-ever cup competition with comes courtesy of Portugal. SL Benfica and Sporting Clube de Portugal are giants of Lisbon’s footballing scene, having devoured trophies en masse over the years. However, located just 20 minutes drive from Portugal’s capital city is the town of Estoril. This famous luxury tourist destination attracts visitors from across the globe with attractions such as Casino Estoril and Lisbon and Estoril Film Festival.

Rather less famous in the town is its football team, GD Estoril Praia, owing to the domination of Portuguese football by its big three clubs “Os Tres Grandes” comprising of the aforementioned Benfica and Sporting in addition to FC Porto. Nonetheless, GD Estoril Praia have maintained a presence in Portuguese football’s top-flight Liga Primeira. In fact, the 2021/22 season will be their 28th participation at this level in Portugal after winning promotion from the second tier in 2020/21.

Yet despite this number of years spent in the Portuguese top-flight, Estoril have yet to win a major honour. The closest they came was finishing as runners-up in the 1933/34 Portuguese National Cup (Taca de Portugal). Whereas in the league, their highest-ever finish is 4th in the Liga Primeira, achieved twice in 1947/48 and 2013/14.

So can you be the manager to break Estoril’s trophy drought? Toppling “Os Tres Grandes” and winning a Liga Primeira title may take quite a while to accomplish. However, winning a domestic cup competition is certainly an achievable objective. Like England and Scotland, Portugal is a country that operates two domestic cup competitions. A national cup (Taca de Portugal) and the Portuguese League Cup (Taca da Liga). Can you win either of these with Estoril or Canarinhos (Canaries), as they are affectionately known by supporters?

READ ALSO: 10 Teams to try & win the inaugural UEFA Europa Conference League with on FM22  

Crystal Palace FC


The next side seeking a first-ever national cup competition trophy is a name familiar to many. A team who have become established in the English Premier League in recent years yet still lack a trophy to showcase. That team is none other than Crystal Palace, founded as a professional football club in 1905. The Eagles owe their name to the famous Crystal Palace building, constructed to host The Great Exhibition of the Works of Industry of All Nations in 1851, the first-ever World Exhibition.

Crystal Palace joined the English Football League post-World War One with the establishment of the new third tier Football League Third Division in time for the 1920-21 season. The Eagles first reached the top tier of English football for the 1969/70 season. The club achieved noteworthy fame between the late 1980s and early 1990s. In the 1989/90 season, Palace reached the FA Cup final, where they lost a memorable match against Manchester United. After the original match finished 3-3 after extra time at Wembley Stadium, with both Mark Hughes and Ian Wright scoring braces, a final replay took place five days later, and it was The Red Devils who won 1-0 courtesy of a Lee Martin goal.

Crystal Palace have won the now defunct Full Members Cup in 1990/91, defeating Everton FC 4-1 after extra time. It was a tournament which only existed between 1985 and 1992 and was set up to give English teams extra games after the ban imposed on English clubs playing in European club competitions following the Heysel Stadium disaster in the 1985 European Cup Final.

However, when it comes to either the English FA Cup or English Football League Cup, The Eagles have yet to win either competition. Two runner-up finishes in the FA Cup in 1989/90 and 2015/16, where Manchester United defeated them on both occasions being their best performance so far. Can you be the man to lead Crystal Palace to a first-ever domestic cup competition and bring joy to the Selhurst Park locals?

READ ALSO: FM22 Challenge - Bring First Ever Continental Success to These 4 European Countries

Nimes Olympique


We now head to Southern France and more specifically Ligue 2 for the next challenge in the shape of Nimes Olympique. Founding members of Ligue 1 for its inaugural season in 1932-33, Les Crocodiles have an almost equal divide of time spent between the top two flights of French football, having had 36 seasons in Ligue 1 and 30 participations in Ligue 2.

Despite this long history, the club are without a Ligue 1/Coupe de France or the now defunct Coupe de le Ligue title to their name. The closest Nimes have come to a trophy is finishing four times as runners-up in Ligue 1 (1958,1959,1960 & 1972) and as Coupe de France runners-up three times (1958,1961 & 1996).

Having been relegated to Ligue 2 for 2021/22, getting back to the French top flight and stabilising Nimes as a Ligue 1 club will be your first port of call. It wont be easy though with high reputation clubs in the French second tier such as AJ Auxerre, Toulouse FC, Le Havre, AS Nancy and Paris FC all aiming for promotion too. However, one you are back in the top flight, can you lead Nimes to an historic first cup competition win in the Coupe de France?

READ ALSO: 10 Non-English Lower League challenges to do on FM22

Sporting de Gijon


Our next destination for the inaugural cup competition win is Spain and more specifically, the autonomous community of Asturias in the shape of Sporting de Gijon. Rojiblancos were founded in 1905 and for the inaugural national season of Spanish football in 1929 were a founding member of the second tier Segunda Division, the division ironically that they currently inhabit.

Sporting de Gijon had a glory era in the late 1970’s and 1980’s. Between 1977/78 and 1997/98, the club enjoyed a 21 season streak participating in La Liga. During this time, Rojiblancos recorded two 5th placed finishes (1977/78 & 1990/91), a brace of 4th placed finishes (1984/85 and 1986/87), a 3rd place in 1979/80 and finally, 2nd in 1978/79, the greatest league classification in their history.

In addition to never having won a La Liga title, Sporting have also never won a Copa del Rey title, their best finish in this competition being two runner-up placings in 1980/81 and 1981/82. Can you be the FM lover to net an historic first trophy for Sporting in the shape of the Copa del Rey? Maybe after experiencing cup glory, you can then lead them to a legendary La Liga triumph?

READ ALSO: 10 Teams to Manage to a Champions League Title on FM22  

Sao Paulo FC


Next we head to Brazil and to a club which might surprise you as to never having won a domestic cup competition before in the shape of Sao Paulo FC. Noteworthy players to wear the colours of this famous Brazilian Serie A club include Careca, Cafu, Rai, Leonardo, Rogerio Ceni, Edmilson, Serginho, Kaka and Luis Fabiano, all of whom would go on to win many caps for the Brazilian national team.

Tricolor Paulista are ranked 5th for Brasilierao Serie A triumphs with six in total, their 22 Sao Paulo state championships rank them 3rd amongst Sao Paulo state clubs, only trailing Palmeiras and Corinthians. One of the club’s glory eras came under the management of Tele Santana, when Sao Paulo reached the Copa Libertadores final for three consecutive seasons (1992, 1993 and 1994), winning the first two but losing the third.

Despite this strong honours list, Sao Paulo have never won the Copa do Brasil, Brazil’s national domestic cup competition, which curiously only started play in 1989. Their best finish in this competition came in 2000 when they lost to Cruzeiro in the final. Can you add this missing honour to Sao Paulo’s trophy cabinet? Use it perhaps as a spring board to Brasilierao Serie A & Copa Libertadores glories once more?

READ ALSO: 10 English Lower League Teams to Manage on FM22

MSV Duisburg


Back to Europe for the next challenge and more specifically Germany. The next team to attempt to lead to a first domestic cup competition victory are a club who were a founding member of the Bundesliga in 1963, MSV Duisburg. Based in North-Rhine-Westphalia, Duisburg or Die Zebras as they are affectionately known have spent a total of 28 seasons as of 2021/22 in German football’s top flight.

Duisburg’s highest league classification actually came in the very first Bundesliga season in 1963/64 when they finished as runners-up to 1 FC Koln, the first-ever winners of Germany national division. When it comes to the DFB Pokal, Germany’s national cup competition, Die Zebras’ best result was to be runners-up four times (1965/66, 1974/75, 1997/98 and 2010/11).

Can you break Duisburg’s trophy drought and deliver a DFB Pokal title in the future? Duisburg start 2021/22 in the 3. Bundesliga, German football’s third tier, so quite a lot of work will be required to get up to the German top flight before you even contemplate winning a trophy.

READ ALSO: FM22 the Poor Next-Door Neighbour Challenge  

Go Ahead Eagles


Going west from Germany into the neighbouring Netherlands for the next challenge which comes in the shape of Eredivisie club Go Ahead Eagles. Based in the city of Deventer located in Overijssel Province in the North-East of the country, Go Ahead Eagles are the club where former Premier League players Marc Overmars and Raimond van der Gouw started their careers before going on to play for Arsenal and Manchester United.

Before Dutch football went professional and installed a fully national league in 1956, Go Ahead Eagles won four Dutch championships (1916/17, 1921/22, 1929/30 and 1932/33). However, they have never won the Dutch national cup (KNVB Beker). Their best classification in this came in 1964/65 when they finished as runner-up to Feyenoord Rotterdam.

Go Ahead Eagles were promoted to the Eredivisie for the 2021/22 campaign, so you will start this save as a top flight club. Can you lead Go Ahead Eagles to a Dutch cup triumph? Maybe use that initial triumph if you can achieve it as a spring board to taking down Dutch football’s “Big Three” of Ajax, PSV Eindhoven and Feyenoord and claim an Eredivisie title?

READ ALSO: 10 sides to end a long title winning drought with on FM22  

Queen of the South FC


Onto Scotland now and to a club which alongside the aforementioned Go Ahead Eagles has a brilliantly distinctive name (a reason enough to choose a new game save on FM). This club are located in Southern Scotland in the town of Dumfries, it is none other than Queen of the South FC.

The Doonhammers as they are affectionately known by locals were founded in 1919 and have spent 12 seasons in total in the top tier of Scottish football. Despite their long history, Queens have never won a Scottish league title, their highest finish being 4th in the 1933/34 campaign. In addition, Queen of the South have never won a Scottish Cup (best finish being runners-up in 2007/08) or a Scottish League Cup (best finish being semi-finalists in 1950/51 and 1960/61).

Queen of the South have twice won the Scottish League Challenge Cup, however this competition is not open to entry by top tier Scottish Premiership clubs, only those in the second, third and fourth tiers of Scottish football are eligible for entry. Thus, it does not comply with the aforementioned strict criteria of this challenge. Can you therefore lead The Doonhammers, currently a second tier Scottish Championship club to a first ever Scottish Cup or Scottish League Cup trophy?

READ ALSO: 10 Teams to Manage to First Ever Top Flight Promotion on FM22  

Udinese Calcio


For the penultimate club in the lead to an inaugural domestic cup competition win on FM 22 challenge we head to Italy and to a club who might surprise a lot of people as being trophyless. That club is the pride of Friuli-Venezia-Giulia, Udinese Calcio.

Based in the city of Udine and founded in 1896, Le Zebrette (The Little Zebras) as they are famously known by fans are ranked 5th when it comes to longest current consecutive spells spent as a Serie A club, with only Inter Milan, AC Milan, Lazio and Roma having been in Serie A consecutively for a longer period. Udinese’s current unbroken spell as a Serie A club dates back to 1995/96.

Despite this long spell in Italy’s top flight, Udinese have never won a trophy, their highest finish in Serie A was runners-up in 1954/55. The club were also famous for a 3rd place Serie A finish in 1997/98 under the management of Alberto Zaccheroni. Udinese have also never won the Coppa Italia, their best result in this competition being runners-up in 1922. Can you change all of this and lead Le Zebrette to firstly a Coppa Italia triumph and then maybe a Serie A title?

READ ALSO: 10 Teams to Manage to First Ever League Title on FM22  

Sarpsborg 08 FF


Our final club in this challenge comes from Norway’s top flight Eliteserien. Running a different calendar to many other European leagues (Spring to Autumn), managing in Norway can bring its challenges, however, it is also becoming a more popular destination for new FM saves. The Norwegian club who this challenge focuses on are Sarpsborg 08 FF.

Part of the reason for Sarpsborg being a club without a domestic cup competition or domestic league title to their name is the fact that they are the youngest club currently in Norway’s top flight, having only been founded in 2008. Since 2008, Sarpsborg, have spent ten seasons in the Eliteserien, their highest finish being 3rd in 2017. In the Norwegian Cup, the club have twice been runners-up (2015 and 2017).

Are you the manager to write their name into this club’s history books by winning them some silverware? Winning the Norwegian Cup could prove a spring board to winning the Eliteserien title further down the line.


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FM Blog: 10 Teams to Manage to an Inaugural Domestic Cup Competition Win on FM22
10 Teams to Manage to an Inaugural Domestic Cup Competition Win on FM22
Here are ten teams to manage to their first ever domestic cup competition win on FM22. This is a great FM2022 challenge.
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