Skip to content
A place at Wembley is at stake in midweek
  1. Football
  2. EFL Cup

League Cup: All You Need to Know

The League Cup is regarded as the lesser of the two domestic cup competitions in England behind the FA Cup, but it's still a much-coveted trophy.

For much of the last decade, the League Cup has been won by one of the Premier League big boys, but it still represents a chance for smaller clubs in the lower leagues to compete for glory.

Since 2000, the likes of Birmingham City and Swansea City have lifted the trophy, while Cardiff City, Bradford City and Sunderland are among the clubs to have reached the final in the past decade.

With a Europa League place on offer to the winner, the League Cup retains plenty of prestige, even if a lot of the Premier League clubs opt to rotate their squad for the early rounds, often giving youngsters and fringe players the chance to impress.

WhatEFL Cup
WhereEngland and Wales
WhenAugust to February
How to watchSky Sports, ITV (highlights)
OddsMan City 11/4, Liverpool 8/1, Arsenal 10/1, Chelsea 11/1, Tottenham 12/1

When does the League Cup take place?

Traditionally, the competition's early rounds take place from August and it builds up throughout the autumn and winter and into the New Year with the final usually taking place at Wembley at the end of February.

The 2022-23 competition began on 2nd August and the final is scheduled to take place on 23rd February next year.

What is the format of the League Cup?

All 92 clubs in the Premier League and the three divisions of the English Football League enter the competition each year. In the first round, 22 of the 24 Championship clubs take part alongside all League One and League Two clubs.

In the following round, the two remaining Championship clubs who finished 18th and 19th in the previous Premier League season, and the top-flight clubs not involved in European competition all join, and then in the third round the seven Premier League clubs playing European football that season enter.

Matches in all rounds are single-legged, except for the semi-finals, which are played over two legs at the respective teams' home stadiums.

The final was a two-legged affair from 1961 to 1966, but has been a single game ever since.

Where does the League Cup take place?

The cup takes place throughout England and Wales, with the final held at Wembley Stadium in February.

Related Football News

What to expect from Unai Emery at Aston Villa

EFL: Michael Carrick gets chance to shine at Middlesbrough

Can I watch the League Cup?

Yes. Sky Sports broadcasts 15 matches in the competition live per season, while ITV currently airs highlights throughout the rounds.

When did the League Cup first take place?

The League Cup was first held in 1960-61 as the Football League Cup after being implemented by then Football League Secretary Alan Hardaker. It has been a permanent fixture on the football calendar ever since.

Aston Villa were the first-ever winners in 1961, beating Rotherham United 3-2 on aggregate over two legs.

Who has won the League Cup on the most occasions?

Liverpool are the record holders, winning the competition nine times and most recently earlier this year when they beat Chelsea on penalties after the final had finished goalless after extra-time.

Manchester City - who won the cup four times in succession between 2018 and 2021 - have lifted the trophy eight times, while Aston Villa, Manchester United and Chelsea have all been victorious in the competition five times.

Who are the favourites for the League Cup?

Man City are 11/4 to win the EFL Cup this season, ahead of current holders Liverpool at 8/1.

Arsenal are 10/1 to lift the trophy, ahead of Chelsea at 11/1 and Tottenham at 12/1, while Manchester United and Newcastle United are rated at 14/1.

Related Articles

bet365 uses cookies

We use cookies to deliver a better and more personalised service. For more information, see our Cookie Policy