Budweiser, the sponsors of the FA Cup have scored an own goal with teams calling foul. Graeme Le Saux, David Seaman, Ray Parlour and Claudio Caniggia have been signed by Budweiser for Wembley FC to play in the competition next season in a publicity stunt that looks to have back fired.
Wembley FC, the non-league side it backs, in next season's FA Cup for which the Football Association (FA) have reportedly received £24m for over three years, had earlier this season installed Terry Venables as Technical advisor by Budweiser.
The FA said the US company had not broken any rules but stressed the Wembley FC stunt did not have anything to do with its own arrangement with the brand.
The former England internationals Ray Parlour, Martin Keown and Graeme Le Saux, the Argentinean Claudio Caniggia and the American striker Brian McBride have all signed.
While Budweiser believes it is buying into the romance of the competition, the PR stunt has already drawn criticism from fans of other non-league clubs, who perceive it as unfair.