What does the Round of 16 Carabao Cup draw entail for the EFL clubs?
Last night the Carabao Cup Round of 16 draw was made – the draw saw only four EFL teams entered into the hat, three of which in the Championship and the other in League One.
Here we look at what this draw leaves ahead of those four EFL clubs and the chances of any of them progressing further:
Stoke City v Brentford
Stoke City were the first Championship club out the hat last night. The Potters currently sit just inside the play-off spots and beat Premier League side Watford on Tuesday evening. Away from home, Stoke were able to produce somewhat of an upset knocking out a team in the league above in convincing fashion, winning 3-1.
The Round of 16 draw has left Stoke with another newly-promoted Premier League team between them and the quarter-finals. Brentford dismissed of Oldham Athletic with ease midweek knocking seven past the League Two side. However, with Stoke at home, this game will definitely not be as one sided as that and the Stoke supporters will like their chances of reaching the quarters.
Preston North End v Liverpool
Preston North End are struggling for form in their league campaign but are building momentum in the Carabao Cup – they’ve scored 11 goals so far in the competition but the next test is by far the biggest for the Lilywhites.
After brushing past Cheltenham midweek, Preston have been offered the chance to welcome joint-top of the Premier League, Liverpool. Frankie McAvoy’s have in no doubt been handed the hardest draw out of all the EFL clubs left in the competition, but they’ve also been gifted with the opportunity to create the biggest upset so far in the Carabao Cup.
QPR v Sunderland
The draw last night also blessed us with the prospect of an all EFL clash where QPR will welcome Sunderland down south to Loftus Road. Both teams will fancy their chances coming into this one. Queens Park Rangers managed a 2-2 draw to Everton in the Third Round, later beating them on penalties. Whereas the Black Cats have already seen off Championship opposition in the Second Round where an Aiden O’Brien hat-trick completed a 3-2 win over the Seasiders.
QPR are on the brink of the play-offs in the Championship whilst Sunderland sit joint-top of League One. There is no doubt that most sides will have wanted to draw Sunderland in this round but the Wearsiders will certainly fancy their chances of putting up a valiant fight against yet another opponent sat higher in the league system than them.