As we move into Semi-Final territory in the Carabao Cup, we have previewed what’s coming up over the next few days…
Will Manchester remain red or will the blue side regain bragging rights?
Manchester United host noisy neighbours Manchester City in the first leg of the first Carabao Cup Semi-Final on Tuesday evening.
Ole Gunnar Solskjaer’s side were victorious in Premier League action last month, securing a 2-1 win over City at the Etihad Stadium, thanks to goals from Marcus Rashford and Anthony Martial.
United squeezed past Sky Bet League One outfit Rochdale in Round Three, but convincingly overcame Chelsea and Colchester United to reach the Semi-Finals and will be targeting League Cup success for the first time since defeating Southampton back in 2017.
The Citizens have been relentless in this competition, as you’d expect, recording wins over Preston North End, Southampton and Oxford United to get to this stage.
The current holders of the competition could become only the second team, after Liverpool, to win the cup three times on the bounce.
Pep Guardiola welcomed back defender Aymeric Laporte and winger Leroy Sane to his ranks after both players returned to first-team training following lengthy injuries, however it could be too early for the pair to feature in the first leg.
Foxes to see off Villa once again?
Will it be the same again for Leicester City or will Aston Villa restore some pride in the sides' second meeting of the season?
The Foxes were relentless in their Premier League game back in December, running out 4-1 winners at Villa Park. A brace from Jamie Vardy and a goal apiece from Kelechi Iheanacho and Jonny Evans kept Brendan Rodgers’ side within touching distance of Jurgen Klopp’s runaway train.
Leicester have also been impressive in the Carabao Cup. Since overcoming fellow Premier League side Newcastle United in a penalty shootout in Round Three, they have recorded wins against Luton Town, Burton Albion and Everton to advance to this stage.
Aston Villa, on the other hand, have taken a bit of time to re-adjust to life in the top tier of English football, finding themselves in 17th place in the league standings.
Dean Smith’s side have arguably had the toughest run in the Carabao Cup this season, with the Villians having to get past Premier League opponents Wolverhampton Wanderers and league leaders Liverpool to get this far.
Video Assistant Referee (VAR) will be in operation for the four Semi-Finals and Wembley Final in this year’s Carabao Cup.
Fans in the stadium will be kept abreast of in-game developments with the same notification process and protocols put in place for supporters as has been used throughout the 2019/20 Premier League season.
Based remotely at Stockley Park, VAR will assist the referee in only four match-changing situations: goals, penalty/no penalty decisions, direct red cards shown or not shown (second yellow cards are not able to be reviewed) and mistaken identity.