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Upsets, rivalries and penalty shoot-outs: The Capital One Cup is back!

10 Aug | BY Betway | MIN READ TIME |
Upsets, rivalries and penalty shoot-outs: The Capital One Cup is back!

Local derbies, differing priorities and teams still finding their feet - the Capital One Cup first round offers the potential for plenty of shocks

The new season may only be three days old but already the first domestic cup competition of the campaign is upon us with the return of the Capital One Cup this week.

Romantic references to magic may be reserved for the older, more prestigious FA Cup, but its younger cousin has also been seducing neutrals with more than its fair share of shocks and surprises during recent years.

Take Cardiff City, who became the first club from outside the top flight to reach the League Cup final in over a decade when they lost on penalties to Liverpool in 2012.

This achievement almost paled into insignificance when compared to the feats of Bradford City the following season, who defeated three Premier League opponents in Wigan Athletic, Arsenal and Aston Villa en route to a Wembley defeat against Swansea City.

The fact that six Football League clubs have made it as far as the quarter-finals during the last three years alone just goes to show that the potential is there for underdogs to raise a few eyebrows and spring a surprise or two – with plenty of factors working to their advantage…

Catching teams cold

The beauty of the cup starting so early is that with managers across the country still getting their feet under the table and squads still getting to grip with each other’s names there is plenty of opportunity for smaller clubs to catch their opposition on the hop.

Take Cambridge United, for example – priced at 13/5 and on a high following a productive summer and a thumping 3-0 opening-day win – who will be relishing their trip to Rotherham United at the New York Stadium where the Millers were embarrassed 4-1 by Championship new-boys MK Dons on Saturday.

Another team who will fancy their chances are Wycombe Wanderers, who responded to the disappointment of play-off final defeat last time out with an emphatic win over York City at the weekend. They look good value at 12/5 to humble Championship side Fulham on home turf.

12/5 – Wycombe to beat Fulham

Derby days

The regionalised draw split between North and South can still produce the odd geographical anomaly – just ask Gillingham fans, who will clock up more than 250 miles in getting to Plymouth – but it can also throw up some fascinating derbies to stir local passions.

It wasn’t too long ago that Wigan were bidding farewell to the Premier League having just lifted the FA Cup, but on Tuesday night they will welcome Lancashire rivals Bury for the first time in nearly 14 years. The Shakers, fresh off the back of automatic promotion, are already sitting above the Latics in League One and generously priced at 3/1.

West Ham favourite Martin Allen, meanwhile, will lead his Conference champions Barnet to take on Millwall at The New Den for the very first time in their history. The Bees are priced at 7/2 to sting the Lions as they recover from relegation last year.

3/1 – Bury to beat Wigan

Differing priorities

With Premier League clubs not entering the competition until round two, this is the stage of the competition where some of the bigger fish in the Championship will look to utilise their larger squads in order to focus on their main priority of promotion to the top flight and all of the benefits that this entails. 

With this in mind, Hull’s trip to Accrington and Burnley’s visit to Port Vale look particularly tricky affairs with Stanley priced at an eye-catching 9/2 to tame the Tigers and Vale a tempting 16/5 to overcome Sean Dyche’s side, who lost some of their most valuable assets in the summer.

16/5 – Port Vale to beat Burnley

With so many factors working in the underdogs’ favour there is certainly plenty of potential for upsets as the League Cup gets under way.

Capital One Cup first round betting

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