Goal brings you all you need to know about this year’s edition of the Carabao Cup, where Man City will be looking to clinch their eighth title
The 2020-21 edition of the Carabao Cup began in August, with Championship, League One and League Two sides entering the competition.
Manchester City lifted their seventh Carabao Cup and third title in a row after beating Aston Villa in the final in March.
This season’s final will be played on February 28, 2021 at Wembley Stadium.
Goal has your complete guide, including participating teams, full draw information, fixture schedules and results.
- Carabao Cup format
- Carabao Cup fourth round
- Carabao Cup third round
- Carabao Cup second round
- Carabao Cup first round
- Carabao Cup on TV
- Carabao Cup rules
- Away goals
- Why is the League Cup called the Carabao Cup?
- Past winners
All 92 clubs competing in the Premier League and the English Football League enter the 2020-21 Carabao Cup, with participation distributed across the divisions.
The competition will be played over seven rounds, with single-leg ties throughout. The previous two-legged tie for the semi-final was scrapped in favour of one.
In round one, the draw was split into northern and southern clubs with 22 Championship sides and all League One and League Two clubs entering.
The fourth round ties will be played the week commencing September 28.
The likes of Arsenal, Chelsea, Leicester City, Liverpool, Manchester City, Manchester United and Tottenham Hotspur were automatically registered for the third round due to their participation in European competitions.
Leyton Orient’s match against Tottenham was called off due to the home side announcing positive Covid-19 cases.
The draw was conducted on September 6, and will be played the week commencing September 21.
|TBD||Leyon Orient vs Tottenham|
|Sep 22||Newport County 3-1 Watford|
|Sep 22||West Brom 2-2 Brentford (4-5 pens.)|
|Sep 22||West Ham vs Hull City|
|Sep 22||Luton Town vs Man Utd|
|Sep 23||Preston North End vs Brighton|
|Sep 23||Chelsea vs Barnlsey|
|Sep 23||Fleetwood Town vs Everton|
|Sep 23||Fulham vs Sheffield Wednesday|
|Sep 23||Leicester City vs Arsenal|
|Sep 23||Millwall vs Burnley|
|Sep 23||Morecambe vs Newcastle United|
|Sep 24||Bristol City vs Aston Villa|
|Sep 24||Lincoln City vs Liverpool|
|Sep 24||Manchester City vs Bournemouth|
Fifty teams are involved in round two of the Carabao Cup, including Premier League clubs that are not participating in European competition.
Like previous years, the draw was again split into ‘northern’ and ‘southern’ sections. The draw for the second round was made on September 6.
|Sep 15||Bournemouth 0-0 Crystal Palace (pens. 11-10)|
|Sep 15||Bradford City 0-5 Lincoln City|
|Sep 15||Burton Albion 1-3 Aston Villa|
|Sep 15||Derby County 1-2 Preston North End|
|Sep 15||Fleetwood Town 2-1 Port Vale|
|Sep 15||Gillingham 1-1 Coventry City (5-4 pens.)|
|Sep 15||Leyton Orient 3-2 Plymouth Argyle|
|Sep 15||Middlesbrough 0-2 Barnsley|
|Sep 15||Millwall 3-1 Cheltenham Town|
|Sep 15||Morecambe 1-0 Oldham Athletic|
|Sep 15||Newcastle United 1-0 Blackburn Rovers|
|Sep 15||Newport County 1-0 Cambridge United|
|Sep 15||Oxford United 1-1 Watford (0-3 pens.)|
|Sep 15||Reading 0-1 Luton Town|
|Sep 15||Rochdale 0-2 Sheffield Wednesday|
|Sep 15||West Ham United 3-0 Charlton Athletic|
|Sep 16||Bristol City 4-0 Northampton Town|
|Sep 16||Everton 3-0 Salford City|
|Sep 16||Ipswich Town 0-1 Fulham|
|Sep 16||Leeds United 1-1 Hull City (8-9 pens.)|
|Sep 16||Southampton 0-2 Brentford|
|Sep 16||West Brom 3-0 Harrogate Town|
|Sep 17||Brighton 4-0 Portsmouth|
|Sep 17||Burnley 1-1 Sheffield United (5-4 pens.)|
|Sep 17||Wolves 0-1 Stoke|
Seventy clubs participated in the first round, with 24 teams from League Two (tier four), 24 from League One (tier three), and 22 from the Championship (tier two).
The draw was divided between ‘northern’ and ‘southern’ sections. Teams were drawn against a team from the same section.
|Aug 29||Preston North End 4-0 Mansfield Town|
|Aug 29||Blackburn Rovers 3-2 Doncaster Rovers|
|Aug 29||Stoke City 0-0 Blackpool (5-4 pens.)|
|Aug 29||Stevenage 3-3 Portsmouth (1-3 pens.)|
|Sep 4||Burton Albion 1-1 Accrington Stanley (4-2 pens.)|
|Sep 4||Middlesbrough 4-3 Shrewsbury Town|
|Sep 5||Derby County 0-0 Barrow (3-2 pens.)|
|Sep 5||Plymouth Argyle 3-2 Queens Park Rangers|
|Sep 5||Crawley Town 1-3 Millwall|
|Sep 5||Gillingham 1-0 Southend United|
|Sep 5||Bristol City 2-0 Exeter City|
|Sep 5||Walsall 0-0 Sheffield Wednesday (2-4 pens.)|
|Sep 5||Tranmere Rovers 1-1 Harrogate Town (7-8 pens.)|
|Sep 5||Crewe Alexandra 1-2 Lincoln City|
|Sep 5||Huddersfield Town 0-1 Rochdale|
|Sep 5||Bolton Wanderers 1-2 Bradford City|
|Sep 5||Fleetwood Town 3-2 Wigan Athletic|
|Sep 5||Grimsby Town 1-1 Morecambe (3-4 pens.)|
|Sep 5||Scunthorpe United 1-2 Port Vale|
|Sep 5||Sunderland 0-0 Hull City (4-5 pens.)|
|Sep 5||Salford City 1-1 Rotherham United (4-2 pens.)|
|Sep 5||Barnsley 1-0 Nottingham Forest|
|Sep 5||Oldham Athletic 3-0 Carlisle United|
|Sep 5||Swindon Town 1-3 Charlton Athletic|
|Sep 5||Forest Green Rovers 1-2 Leyton Orient|
|Sep 5||Milton Keynes Dons 0-1 Coventry City|
|Sep 5||Peterborough United 0-1 Cheltenham Town|
|Sep 5||Northampton Town 3-0 Cardiff City|
|Sep 5||Luton Town 3-1 Norwich City|
|Sep 5||Birmingham City 0-1 Cambridge United|
|Sep 5||Newport County 2-0 Swansea City|
|Sep 5||Oxford United 1-1 Wimbledon (4-3 pens.)|
|Sep 5||Reading 3-1 Colchester United|
|Sep 5||Ipswich Town 3-0 Bristol Rovers|
|Sep 6||Brentford 1-1 Wycombe Wanderers (4-2 pens.)|
In the United Kingdom, the Carabao Cup will be broadcast and live-streamed on Sky Sports.
In the United States, the competition will be shown on ESPN channels.
As was the case in 2019-20, extra-time will be abandoned for all rounds except for the final, with ties advancing straight to penalties in the event that the score is a draw at the end of regular time.
This was introduced in order to limit issues of “additional fatigue”, as Carabao Cup fixtures typically take place in the middle of the week.
The ABBA penalty system trial was also eliminated, with the format for penalty shoot-outs now reverting to the standard ABAB penalty-taker order.
Seeding has also been removed from the first two rounds.
Video assistant refereeing (VAR) will continue to be in use in fixtures played at Premier League grounds.
Additionally, this will mark the first instance in which the winner will also qualify for the play-offs of the brand-new Europa Conference League, instead of the second qualifying round of the Europa League.
All ties will be played as single legs.
If both teams are level after the end of full-time during the second leg of either of the semi-final ties, the game will go directly to a penalty shoot-out with a no away goals rule implemented – a rule which began in 2018-19.
Previously, the away-goal rule was used in the semi-final stage in the same manner as it is in the Champions League knockout rounds. If, for instance, the away team scored a goal in the first leg that ended in a 1-1 draw, with the second leg ending 0-0, then that team would have progressed to the final courtesy of the away-goals rule.
Now, no such rule will be considered and second-leg stalemates will be decided ultimately by a penalty shoot-out.
Why is the League Cup called the Carabao Cup?
Until 2016, the tournament was named the English Football League Cup (EFL Cup) instead of the League Cup, following the rebranding of the Football League to the English Football League.
Officially, the EFL Cup is known as the Carabao Cup due to the energy drink being the tournament’s official sponsors.
Prior to Carabao’s sponsorship of the tournament starting from 2017, the competition was called the EFL Cup (2016-17), the Capital One Cup (2012-13 to 2015-16), the Carling Cup (sponsored by Molson Coors from 2003-04 to 2011-12), the Worthington Cup (sponsored by Worthington’s from 1998-99 to 2002-03), and the Coca-Cola Cup (from 1992-93 to 1997-98).
Liverpool have won the Carabao Cup the most times, winning their eighth in 2012 when they defeated Cardiff City on penalties.
Behind them are Man City, who lifted their seventh Carabao Cup in 2020 when they beat Aston Villa through penalty shootout. Manchester United, Aston Villa and Chelsea have all won the Carabao Cup five times each.
Tottenham and Nottingham Forest have both won the competition four times apiece.