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Carabao Cup update: Man Utd, Chelsea, Arsenal, Man City

Manchester United will be away to Championship club Bristol City in the Carabao Cup fifth round

The Carabao Cup Fifth Round pairing was announced during a much-delayed draw on Thursday afternoon. The exciting ties will be played during the week beginning December 18, 2017, with the exact dates still to be confirmed. Manchester United will attempt to retain the trophy after winning it for a 5th time in the club's history last May as they travel away to Championship club Bristol City. Red Devil’s manager Jose Mourinho's side began the road to the Carabao Cup trophy again in 2017 with a 4-1 EFL Third Round win over Burton Albion in September, before registering a comfortable 2-0 away victory against the Swans in the Last 16 on Tuesday night. Championship League side Bristol City have had a longer route to the last eight, commencing with a thumping 5-0 home win over Plymouth Argyle in the League Cup First Round. Bristol City manager Lee Johnson's men have since produced some surprising results to knock out three Premier League teams, winning 3-2 away to Watford and 2-0 at home to Stoke City before defeating Crystal Palace 4-1 this week in front of a delighted crowd at Ashton Gate.

In the past, the Reds and the Robins have clashed 35 times, with all matches except the 1909 FA Cup final that was won 1-0 by Manchester United played in the old Football League Divisions 1 and 2. The last match between the two clubs was at Man United’s home ground, Old Trafford, in February 1980 when Dave Sexton's men earned a comfortable 4-0 home win, having drawn 1-1 away previously in that same top-flight campaign. Of note is that former Man United youth-team goalkeeper Luke Steele wears the number 15 shirt for Bristol City, who are currently in seventh position on the Championship League Table in the race for promotion to the top tier England Premier League.

Carabao Cup fifth round draw, fixtures

In the recent Carabao Cup draw, the Gunners, Arsenal, Manchester United, Manchester City, and Leicester City finally learned their fates after the much anticipated Twitter EL Cup draw that failed. The draw had been scheduled to go live at 4pm UK time on Thursday, but in the end the draw was pre-recorded and published to @CarabaoCup Twitter channel at 5.45pm. Today both the EFL and Twitter issued formal apologies following the events that led to Thursday’s Carabao Cup Round Five Draw being plagued by technical failings. The titan clubs learned that Premier League giant club Arsenal will host West Ham at the Emirates Stadium. Man Utd will travel to Ashton Gate Stadium to play Bristol City. Premier League leaders Chelsea will host Bournemouth at Stamford Bride. Man City travel to King Power Stadium to play Leicester City. Then on February 25, 2018, the EFL Cup Final will be held at Wembley Stadium in London. Great EFL tickets are already for sale online for all matches at LiveFootballTickets.com! Twitter apologized to supporters via their UK Twitter account through a Twitter spokesman. "We're sorry for the issues that led to the delay of today's Round Five draw. We would also like to apologize to the thousands of supporters who had been patiently awaiting news of who their team would be playing.”

Twitter then apologized to the EFL Cup

“Despite receiving a number of assurances from senior Twitter figures the draw was subject to almost a 90-minute delay and the plan to stream the proceedings live on the Twitter platform was aborted as thousands of fans around the world awaited news,” reported the EFL Cups official website.” Twitter’s investigation is ongoing, however, Twitter’s commitment to deliver a service to the EFL suffered a failure and Twitter has taken responsibility for that failure. Twitter apologizes to supporters and Clubs, and extends that apology to competition sponsors Carabao. Carabao is a valued and important partner to the EFL and it is only appropriate to stress that the Thai based energy drinks company were not involved in any of the operational aspects of Thursday’s draw. The EFL also wishes to categorically confirm that, despite being forced to move from a live to a prerecorded environment at incredibly short notice, the actual Round Five draw was in no way compromised. The proceedings were overseen by the EFL’s Competition manager and conducted under the strict same conditions as all EFL Competition draws. Finally, the EFL would like to place on record their thanks to draw presenters Sam Matterface, Matt Dawson and Phil Tufnell, who throughout yesterday’s difficulties conducted themselves in a wholly appropriate and professional manner.”

Then the EFL apologized

“The EFL would like to apologize for a number of third party technical issues that affected coverage of today’s previously advertised Carabao Cup Round Five live draw at Twitter HQ,” reported a formal statement from the EFL. “The EFL has received an apology from Twitter UK for the delay which is believed to have occurred as a result of a faulty encoder. The EFL has requested a full explanation into the events that led to this afternoon’s unacceptable delay.” The following are the resulting fixtures for the EFL Cup Fifth Round. The ties drawn are as follows and will be played in the week commencing 18th December.

Chelsea v Bournemouth
Arsenal v West Ham United
Bristol City v Manchester United
Leicester City v Manchester City

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EFL Cup Arsenal v West Ham United Tickets Emirates Stadium - London, United Kingdom
EFL Cup Bristol City v Manchester United Tickets Ashton Gate Stadium - Bristol, United Kingdom
EFL Cup Chelsea v Bournemouth Tickets Stamford Bridge - London, United Kingdom
EFL Cup Leicester City v Manchester City Tickets King Power Stadium - Leicester, United Kingdom

2017 Carabao Cup Final Tickets – EFL Cup Final Tickets

February 25, 2018 EFL Cup Final Tickets Wembley Stadium - London, United Kingdom

More about the League Cup ...
The historic League Cup is also known as the EFL Cup and Carabao Cup. The League Cup was created 52 years ago and has delighted England football fans ever since with cup finals producing surprising results when a minnow club has defeated a titan top tier Premier League side overcoming the odds on more than one occasion. The cup tournaments have almost always provided excitement especially from fans who purchase football tickets to watch the games live. Eighteen of the EFL Cup matches have seen an extra-time period, and in the days of the replayed final, not all of them lead to a decisive outcome. Five replays, one of them even a second replay between Aston Villa and Everton in 1977, have been needed to settle the contests; a penalty shoot-out has been required three times. The first final in 1961 between Rotherham United and Aston Villa had to be delayed until the start of the 1961-62 season; because Rotherham took a 2-0 lead from the first leg at Millmoor. Villa’s second-half goals from Alan O'Neill and Harry Burrows drew them level on aggregate. Villa Park fans exploded when Peter McParland scored in the 109th minute to secure a stunning comeback.

Alan Hardaker, the former EFL Secretary, made a proposal as part of the "Pattern for Football" document suggesting enlarging the League from 92 to 100 clubs, with 5 divisions of 20 teams each, plus the creation of a new Cup competition to compensate for the loss of fixtures. The clubs rejected the shake-up but kept the League Cup that is now renamed The Carabao Cup. From humble beginnings, the popular tournament has increased in prestige. For six years, the two-legged final format continued. In 1966-67, the competition switched to a one-off decider at Wembley Stadium. “If the FA Cup is football’s Ascot, the League Cup Final is its Derby Day,” said Hardaker. The list of League Cup champions includes Aston Villa, Norwich City, Birmingham City, Leicester City, Chelsea, and West Bromwich.

Queens Park Rangers became the first club from the third tier to win the League Cup trophy, recovering from 2-0 down to defeat holders West Bromwich 3-2. QPR were weak in the first half, with Clive Clark scoring twice, however goals from Roger Morgan and Rodney Marsh kept QPR in the match. Mark Lazarus snatched the winner in the 81st minute in yet another glorious, unpredictable moment in the beautiful game, "Lazarus brings Rangers back from the dead", and "Lazarus resurrects the Rs", were the resulting headlines. In 1968 the introduction of a new ruling awarded the EFL League Cup winners a European place in the most prestigious tournament in Europe – the Champions League. The decision instantly made the EFL Cup more attractive to those few clubs still abstaining from the competition.

In 1969, minnows Swindon Town played mighty Arsenal, the previous year's runners-up - pitting a third-division club against one from the first division. After Wembley staged the "Horse of the Year Show" the previous week and with a downpour of rain falling, the pitch was a quagmire. Swindon took the lead through winger Roger Smart’s goal in the first half and it was not until 4 minutes from time that Bobby Gould equalized for the Gunners to force extra time. The Smart fired home after a scramble and memorably treked through the heavy mud on the pitch before rounding Bob Wilson to slot in his second goal in front of a stunned crowd of 98,189. Roger Smart earned a place in Swindon's hall of fame. However the minnow Wiltshire club was not allowed to compete in Europe the following season due to their lower-league status.

In 1977 Aston Villa took 330 minutes to defeat Everton. The first match finished 0-0 at Wembley, the first replay 1-1 at Hillsborough, after extra time, and the second replay 3-2 to Villa at Old Trafford, also after an additional period. In the third attempt in Manchester, Brian Little ended the epic marathon, concluding the "triple-header" that was watched by more than 200,000 supporters. Bob Latchford struck first for Everton but the goal was cancelled by what was described as a "40-yard screamer" from center half Chris Nicholl. Little took Villa into the lead only one minute later when defender Mick Lyons made it 2-2. Next Little loomed large with a late winner to give Villa their 3rd EFL Cup triumph, adding to their victories in 1975 - 1-0 over Norwich City - and 1961.

In the 1970s - 1980s, Liverpool's domestic and European dominance extended into the competition as they won four consecutive finals between 1981 and 1984 defeating West Ham United 2-1 in a replay, Tottenham Hotspur 3-1 after extra time, Manchester United 2-1 after extra time and Everton 1-0 in a replay. With further victories - over Bolton Wanderers (2-1 in 1995), Birmingham City (5-4 on penalties, after a 1-1 draw, in 2001), Manchester United (2-0 in 2003) and Cardiff City (3-2 on penalties, after a 2-2 draw, in 2012) - Liverpool established competition records of 8 victories and 11 appearances in the final. Villa are the next best, with five League Cup wins, with Chelsea, Manchester United, Nottingham Forest and Tottenham on four each.

By 1981, The League Cup had become the first major Cup competition to bear the name of a sponsor - The Milk Cup - following a ground-breaking deal with the National Dairy Council. Over the next three decades, the competition went on to have a number of different sponsored titles - from The Milk Cup to The Littlewoods Challenge Cup, The Rumbelows Cup, The Coca-Cola Cup, The Worthington Cup, The Carling Cup The Capital One Cup and currently, The Carabao Cup. After the closure of Wembley Stadium in London for refurbishment in 2000, the League Cup final was held in Cardiff's Millennium Stadium from 2001 until 2007. In the first League Cup Final held in Cardiff, Liverpool defeated Birmingham 5-4 on penalties following a 1-1 draw in extra time. It was the first time a spot-kick shoot-out had been needed in a major English domestic final and gave titan club Liverpool a first trophy since they won the same competition by beating Bolton Wanderers 2-1 in 1995. Extra time was also required in 2005, when Liverpool revisited the Millennium this time against Chelsea. After the match ended 1-1, Chelsea won in the additional period, in front of a crowd of 78,000, with goals from Didier Drogba and Mateja Kezman.

Since the EFL Cup Final returned to the new Wembley Stadium in London in 2008 there has never been more than one goal separating the sides in five years. Tottenham Hotspur went to an extra 30 minutes to see off Chelsea 2-1 in 2008 however next year they lost 4-1 on penalties to Manchester United after a 0-0 draw. United retained the League Cup next time out, defeating Aston Villa 2-1, before Birmingham amazed the Gunners in 2011 with a 2-1 victory, Obafemi Martins scored the late winner. In the EFL Cup Final of 2012, Liverpool met Championship club Cardiff City for a rollercoaster of clash that ended 1-1 after the regulation 90 minutes and 2-2 after extra time. Liverpool won the League Cup trophy for the 8th time, when Cardiff defender Anthony Gerrard, the cousin of Liverpool captain Stevie Gerrard, missed the tenth penalty kick. Carabao Cup crowds in the current era are at a record high after providing more than 30 years of beautiful football for supporters. Do noit miss the chance to enjoy watching England's biggest clubs! Buy legal football tickets for this season’s Carabao Cup matches now online from LiveFootballTickets.com!