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Carabao Cup

Carabao Cup: A platform for success

13 June 2017

Excitement is building ahead of the Round One draw of the 2017/18 Carabao Cup, which takes place on Friday 16th June at Carabao HQ in Thailand.

The competition is steeped in history, and has provided a stepping stone for many players to go out and impress, to aid their development, and to stake their claim for a regular first-team place.

Here's just a handful of players who made their bow in the competition, before becoming household names in world football.

Cesc Fabregas

Arriving at Arsenal from Barcelona in September 2003, it didn't take long for 16-year-old starlet Cesc Fabregas to make his first-team bow, and that debut came in the League Cup.

Just a month later, the Spaniard was included in a young Gunners' line-up that defeated Rotherham United, and he became the club's youngest ever goalscorer in the next round, netting in a 5-1 win over Wolverhampton Wanderers.

The gifted midfielder has since gone on to become one of the world's best footballers, winning almost all there is to be won at both club and international level. In 2015, he added the League Cup to his collection, winning the competition with Chelsea.

Wayne Rooney

“Remember the name... Wayne Rooney.”

That was the famous line after Everton's teenage sensation thundered home a Premier League winner against Arsenal in October 2002, but it was at the start of that month when Rooney registered his first goals for the Toffees – scoring twice in a 3-0 League Cup win at Wrexham.

The striker soon earned a move to Manchester United, and has received numerous individual and team honours since – three of which have been League Cup wins.

Rooney scored in the 2006 and 2010 finals against Wigan Athletic and Aston Villa, before lifting the trophy at Wembley back in February.

Read more: Click here for details of the Carabao Cup Round One draw

John Terry

The first of John Terry's 717 appearances for Chelsea came all the way back in 1998, and it was in a League Cup win over Aston Villa.

The central defender went on to become a Blues' stalwart, captaining the club to multiple titles between his debut and his departure this summer, including a hat-trick of League Cup successes.

Not only did he get his hands on the trophy in 2005, 2007 and 2015, Terry is also one of just two players to win the Alan Hardaker Trophy – awarded to the best player in the Final – twice.

Fergie's Fledglings

A two-time winner of the League Cup, a glittering Manchester United career for Paul Scholes all started in this competition, scoring twice on his Red Devils debut as they overcame Port Vale.

David Beckham, Nicky Butt and Gary Neville were among the other future superstars to be introduced to the world over the two legs, which United won 4-1 on aggregate.

That was in 1994, and those players went on to become permanent fixtures as Sir Alex Ferguson's men dominated English football in the years that followed, winning the League Cup in 2006 and consecutively in 2009 and 2010.


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