Carabao Cup predictions: Third round fixtures

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The 2023/24 Carabao Cup returns this week as teams in Europe join those who won their second-round matches back in August.

Holders Manchester United managed to put their crisis to one side at the weekend by beating Burnley and now have two games against Crystal Palace in quick succession to look forward to.

The tie of the round sees Manchester City – four-time winners of the tournament under Pep Guardiola – travel to Newcastle, who battered Sheffield United 8-0 in preparation for the treble winners’ visit.

With rotation in starting XIs expected and plenty of goals hoped for up and down the land, here’s how 90min sees the third round of Carabao Cup fixtures panning out.

Tuesday 26 September

Erik ten Hag

Ten Hag needs another win / Will Palmer/Allstar/GettyImages

Tuesday’s Carabao Cup action sees five top-flight teams take to stadiums around the country, with Manchester United‘s clash with Crystal Palace the only all-Premier League tie of the night. The Eagles have been quiet in front of goal in recent weeks, though United have hardly enjoyed recent weeks under Erik ten Hag.

The Red Devils remain favourites to reach the next round, however, as they try to retain the first trophy they won under the Dutchman in his debut term as manager.

Kick-off Time (BST)

Fixture

Prediction

19:45

Exeter vs Luton

0-3

19:45

Ipswich vs Wolves

2-1

19:45

Port Vale vs Sutton United

2-0

19:45

Bradford vs Middlesbrough

0-2

19:45

Salford City vs Burnley

0-3

19:45

Mansfield vs Peterborough

0-1

20:00

Manchester United vs Crystal Palace

2-1

Luton have lost all but two of their games in all competitions this season but will expect to breeze past Exeter City, who have lost three of their last four games.

Wolves‘ trip to Ipswich is laced with danger. The Wanderers’ main aim this season looks to be avoiding relegation, while the Tractor Boys are aiming to return to the Premier League after a 20-year absence having made a lightning fast start to the Championship season.

Wednesday 27 September

Jurgen Klopp

Klopp’s Liverpool won both domestic cups in 2021/22 / Matt McNulty/GettyImages

Wednesday’s fixture list sees the remaining Premier League teams enter the fray. Aston Villa are favourites against Everton, though the Villans’ added excursions in Europe may offer the Toffees more hope of reaching the fourth round.

West Ham‘s impressive start to the campaign has been grounded by recent losses to Manchester City and Liverpool but the Hammers should return to winning ways at mid-table League One side Lincoln.

Norwich have conceded eight goals in their last two Championship games – including a rather wild 6-2 defeat to Plymouth last time out – and their reward for reaching the third round is a trip to Fulham, who knocked out Tottenham in a penalty shootout at Craven Cottage.

How seriously Jurgen Klopp and Liverpool take the Carabao Cup this season will be clear to see from the Reds’ starting XI against Leicester, but it’s a tournament they won as recently as 2021/22 and the Foxes may not be able to withstand the attacking quality on show at Anfield.

Kick-off Time (BST)

Fixture

Prediction

19:45

Aston Villa vs Everton

2-1

19:45

Lincoln City vs West Ham

0-3

19:45

Fulham vs Norwich

2-0

19:45

Blackburn vs Cardiff

1-1

19:45

Liverpool vs Leicester

2-0

19:45

Bournemouth vs Stoke

2-1

19:45

Brentford vs Arsenal

1-2

19:45

Chelsea vs Brighton

0-2

20:00

Newcastle vs Manchester City

1-2

League victories have escaped Andoni Iraola and Bournemouth so far this term but the visit of Stoke should yield progression into the fourth round.

Arsenal couldn’t manage victory in the north London derby on Sunday, twice going ahead before the full-time whistle blew at 2-2, and a rotated XI could find the going tough at Brentford, who have struggled to hit top form during the early stages of the 2023/24 season.

The tough times look set to keep on rolling for Mauricio Pochettino and Chelsea, who lost 1-0 at home to Villa on Sunday, when high-flying Brighton visit Stamford Bridge. The Seagulls are favourites, having not lost to the Blues in their last five meetings.

Newcastle‘s meeting with Manchester City is the tie of the round. The Magpies reached the final of the competition last season and may fancy their chances more if Guardiola rings the changes, but that won’t stop City from being favourites to reach the next round.

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