Tonight we see the first wave of third round games in the newly named Capital One Cup. At this stage of the competition the chance of a few upsets is certainly a likely and tonight we do have a few David v Goliath matches.
The one that sticks out of the fixture list most is Crawley Town v Swansea City. In the last round Crawley beat Bolton Wanderers with two goals in the last ten minutes. It was no smash and grab by the home team though, as they managed 14 attempts on goal and with this game also at the Broadfield stadium we could have another shock on our hands.
Swansea City will want to prove the critics wrong after losing badly to an impressive Everton side on Saturday, even away from home Everton managed 20 shots on goal, so tonight’s affair will be entertaining at least. I could see this ending 3-2 to Crawley after extra time maybe.
The game that’s been hand picked by the big wigs at Sky Sports to make them some money is at Elland road where Leeds United play Everton. After a wonderful start to life in the Premiership Elland road won’t be an easy place to come and win but with an indifferent start to the season for Leeds I doubt they will put up much of a fight.
David Moyes will have made his team mentally strong as well as physically for this encounter. Expect to see El Hadji Diouf making some enemies though as the pantomime villain. I reckon it’ll finish 0-2 to Everton.
Another match that has the Premiership team against a Championship team from Yorkshire is Southampton v Sheffield Wednesday. After a great start to life back in the Championship Dave Jones side have lost 4 games in a row and will be looking to this match to gain some confidence. After watching there poor display at home to Bolton on Saturday I hope that Jay Boothroyd isn’t starting as he looks totally unfit.
Martin Taylor at centre back was another one that looks off the pace and it doesn’t reflect too well on Dave Jones as they were both last minute buys on transfer deadline day, with Boothroyd coming in on loan. Keep an eye out for Ross Barkley though, the teenager on loan from Everton looks a bright spark.
Southampton however had a great Saturday smashing 4 past Aston Villa with Rickie Lambert on the score sheet twice this time. If he starts the big man will be hard to handle but ex-Spurs defender Anthony Garder will be given the task of keeping him quiet which could be a good battle to watch.
Speaking as a Wednesday fan I think Southampton will scrape this 2-1.
Swindon Town v Burnley will have the countries top scorer, Charlie Austin, face his old club. The striker has banged in 5 goals in two games for Burnley and has 9 for the season so far but Paolo Di Canio’s side will be doing there best to make his return to the County Ground an unhappy one.
Off the back of a promotion Di Canio’s side are unbeaten in 3 and after a 4-0 win over Bournemouth at the weekend will be high on confidence. Swindon also knocked Stoke City out in the last game and that was away from home so I’m going to go with the home side, 3-1.
MK Dons v Sunderland will have ex-Newcastle player Alan Smith line up against former fierce rivals. After a lot of unlucky injuries Smith will be glad to be playing regularly and with Karl Robinson’s team playing an attractive game in League One this could be entertaining for the neutral. Sunderland however are playing very well and can really hurt most teams on the counter. I think this one will be an away win with Sunderland winning 1-2.
An honourable mention for Bradford City v Burton Albion the two lowest placed clubs playing tonight. Bradford and Burton 4th and 7th in League Two respectively but both defeated Championship opposition to get to the third round. Neither team have lost since the start of the month and whoever wins will hope to get one of the big teams from the Premiership so this will be a very tight affair. Based on the fact Bradford haven’t lost at home since March I think they will just nick it, 1-0.