Round three of the EFL Cup kicks off on Tuesday night with the heavyweights entering the tournament at this stage. Premier League champions Leicester City, Arsenal, Tottenham, Manchester City and Manchester United all take the field. Tottenham aside, all of the above will be visiting lower league sides who will be confident of causing an upset.
Leicester City last met Chelsea in the League Cup in 2007, with the Blues winning 4-3 at Stamford Bridge before eventually missing out on the trophy to Tottenham Hotspur. The Foxes stuck three past Burnley on the weekend with new signing Islam Slimani scoring a brace while The Blues lost for the first time this season, losing 2-1 to Liverpool on Friday Night Football thanks to Jordan Henderson’s beauty.
Friday’s win extended The Reds’ winning streak to two, having beaten Leicester before their visit to Stamford Bridge, and they travel south-east to take on Derby at the iPro Stadium. Derby have lost 21 of their last 26 matches against the Reds in all competitions and currently sit a disappointing 20th place in the Championship.
The Rams fierce rivals Nottingham Forest welcome Arsenal to the City Ground in a game that will see Nicklas Bendtner feature against his former club. With Britt Assombalonga injured, the Danish striker is likely to feature against The Gunners two years after his permanent departure from north London. The 28-year-old has bags of confidence and would back himself to score against the familiar foes who have conceded nine times in their previous five games with only a single clean sheet.
Bendtner’s former Arsenal teammate Jack Wilshire could also make an appearance on Tuesday evening as Bournemouth welcome Preston North End to the south Coast. The midfielder has had an average start to life in Cherry red and would love to use the League Cup as a chance to kick on. The teams met at Deepdale in round three last season with the Cherries winning on penalties following a 2-2 draw.
Everton and Norwich meet again for a second year in the competition; The Toffees beat the Canaries 4-3 on penalties after a 1-1 draw in the fourth round last year. Everton will probably rest Belgian Romelu Lukaku for the weekend while Nelson Oliviera could make his debut for Norwich.
A selection of all-Championship contests round off Tuesday’s action.
Newcastle host Wolves for the second time in four days and will be hoping for a better result after a 2-0 loss to The Wanderers ended their five-game winning streak. The sides will meet in the League Cup for the first time in the competition’s 56-year history tonight.
Leeds United welcome Blackburn Rovers to Elland Road for the second time this season; The Whites beat The Rovers 2-1 last week, a result that kept the Lancashire side at the foot of the Championship table.
Second-placed Brighton welcome Reading to the Seaside with both sides experiencing similar form entering this game with three draws and a win apiece in their last five matches. The teams drew 2-2 at the Madjeski Stadium earlier in the season as Reading had Joey van den Berg sent off after two yellow cards.