Every season the English league cup has a different story to tell, whether it being a triumphant lower league team do exceedingly well in the competition similar to Bradford City back in 2013 who reached the cup final. Or whether it’s a clash of two premier league giants, fighting for the trophy which occurred last season where Manchester City scraped a win over in penalties against Jurgen Klopp’s Liverpool. Although, some premier league teams and promotion fighting championship sides sometimes don’t take the competition very seriously as it’s not on the top of most managers priority list which usually causes some midweek drama for football lovers alike. Therefore, as the round of 16 fixtures are just round the corner, there is heavy debate on whether we shall see potential upsets in the results today and tomorrow night.
Bristol City v Hull City
Mike Phelan’s Hull City started the league campaign in flying fashion as they picked up 6 points in their first 2 league games, including an opening day win over current premier league champions Leicester City. However, since then Phelan has only managed to pick up 1 point from his last 7 games. On the other hand, Bristol City have had a stunning start to the season, due to on loan Chelsea striker Tammy Abrahams 8 league goals which has fired them up into a respective 6th position in the championship. Therefore, Hull City should be aware of Bristol’s firepower in attack as it’s very likely that the championship outfit will turn over the tigers tonight.
Match Prediction: Bristol City 2 Hull City 0
Leeds United v Norwich City
Norwich City who would appear as favourites going into what is an highly anticipated championship fixture, due to them being obvious championship promotion contenders. However, Coming back from a 1-0 loss at home to Preston last Saturday. Norwich will not only have to rest crucial first team players for this saturday’s fixture away at Brighton and Hove Albion but may also be still feeling the negativity from their loss against Preston. Nonetheless, Garry Monk’s men go into this fixture following an impressive away win at Wolverhampton last saturday. Subsequently, Leeds United will be feeling mentally strong going into this game and with them having the home advantage may just lead into to a Leeds United victory.
Match Prediction: Leeds United 1 Norwich City 0
Arsenal v Reading
Arsenal v Reading already has a status of being a league cup thriller due to their last meeting in the competition where Arsenal overcome a 4 goal lead which Reading held, to eventually beat the royals 7-5. 4 seasons after that tremendous game, the two sides meet again but this time Arsenal bring Reading to their fortress the Emirates. Abnormally, they may not be a surprise if Reading upset the premier league giants as Reading come off the back of a 1-0 win over bottom placed championship side Rotherham opposed to Arsenal’s draw against Middlesbrough at the weekend. Moreover, it is unknown how seriously Arsene Wenger it taking the league cup this season. Therefore, if Arsenal try and take Reading for granted and play a relatively weaker side. Reading just might have enough energy in the tank to progress into the quarter finals.
Match Prediction: Arsenal 1 Reading 2
Manchester Utd v Manchester City
By far the most anticipated match up this round of 16 fixtures bring, it is hard to predict what may occur. Both sides come into this fixture following runs of terribly bad form. As Manchester City haven’t won any of their last 3 premier league fixtures which includes a 2-0 defeat to Tottenham Hotspur. Whilst, Jose Mourinho faced his worst defeat since 2010 this weekend against former club Chelsea in a 4-0 defeat. Although, when the Manchester rivals met previously at Old Trafford this season Pep Guardiola’s men won 2-1 in impressive fashion over the red devils. On the other hand, Guardiola may be focusing his season long goals into the premier league and champions league campaigns, which may lead to the decider on who reaches the next round.
Match Prediction: Man Utd 0 Man City 0 (Man Utd to win on penalties)
Liverpool 3 Tottenham 1
Newcastle 1 Preston 2
Southampton 2 Sunderland 0
West Ham 0 Chelsea 2