18 teams.
1-match knockouts.
The SaKo returns.

It marks the beginning of a long journey for Cacos and Eh Puis Merce as the non-league representatives in this year’s competition—both teams will face six games before glory whereas those in DoBo will have to play half that amount in their quest for the cup.

After their surprise victory over FC Des last season, The Jager Bombers’ celebrations at the Wankdorf Stadium quite literally got out of hand as William Penhallurick and his squad made their mark. With reports of a sober Penhallurick wanking in a doorless bathroom circulated, the stadium owners informed the league that they would not be renewing their contract to host future finals. As a result, from this season onwards, the SaKo, DiKo and YoBo finals will be played at the Tony Macaroni Arena—and six sides began their cup journey to Livingston this week.

Paulisa Fekir v Eh Puis Merce
On paper, it might as well be a bye for Mehdi Daoudi’s side but, as Jon Jolley has already shown in the DiKo, he has an eye for a shock result. Eh Puis have been in solid form, and with a recent wildcard, Daoudi’s strength-in-depth should be too much for whatever rabbit-out-of-a-hat trick Jolley tries to pull.

Cacos v Colonel Getafe
Arguably the first round’s most interesting tie, an in-form Cacos face an in-form Getafe in what should be a close game. Of course these sides have met in the DiKo already this season with just four points splitting the sides over two games. Dewi Jones’ team came away with two tight wins (53-50 and 69-68) and will feel confident of getting the cup hat-trick against Younis’ fallen giants.

DTA v The Westicles
A few years ago, this would have been a bubble match but relations between these two rivals have cooled in recent seasons, largely owing to DTA’s brief stint in DoWo. Now both back in DoDi, Davies’ side have slipped while a resurgent Westicles side will fancy their chances on the back of their recent good form. Less than 50 points separate the two sides in the division—a win here could give one side a useful mental edge as they look set to battle it out in DoDi.