With the Capital One Cup kicking off this mid-week in England; there are a lot of teams who will be looking to take this competition seriously, in hope of grabbing a trophy come February/March.
England Capital One Cup
Stoke City to beat Luton @ 1.73 (BetFred) – 3 points
Stoke City will be among the top Premier League sides to take part in the Capital One Cup fixtures tonight. Stoke City has historically been known as a cup team, who have caused some major upsets over period of time.
Tonight Stoke start off as favorites tonight as they travel away to Luton, with Mark Hughes expecting to field a strong side to compete and try to win a title for Stoke. While one would expect him to focus on the league, they have put in some strong performance in recent weeks drawing away to Norwich & Tottenham while just narrowly losing 1-0 to Liverpool. Stoke will look to give some of their new summer signings like Afellay, Shaqiri, Joselu, Molina, Johnson and Given a run out, as they would like them to settle in with their team mates as well as Potters style of play.
Stoke have a strong group of reserve players including the likes of Crouch, Bardsley, Odemwingie, Wilson, Sidwell, Bojan and Ireland among few talented players who will have a run out tonight against the League two side.
Luton are expected to have a great home crowd to support them but 2 losses & 2 draws in 4 has already caused them a spot of bother. They even struggled against teams like Yeovil who had a number of injured players on track. Luton were close to promotion last year; and blew it up towards the end; and will look to focus on league form instead of this tournament, and might field a rotated squad.
Stoke team look too strong not to win, and at this price, you need to really back them solidly.
Leicester City to beat Bury @ 1.73 (BetFred) – 3 points
Leicester City are looking like the team to beat among the mid-table teams in the Premier League with 2 victories & a draw in their opening 3 encounters. Claudio Ranieri has got this team playing really well. They also played a lot of lower league opposition away from home and managed to win 4 and draw 1 game during pre-season this year.
Leicester also have a good bunch of reserves with rotations likely to happen by Ranieri to include the likes of Karamic, Ulloa, Inler, King, James, Simpson, Fuchs, Wasileswki & Schwarzer. Leicester will also supplement these players with some quality service from Mahrez, Albrighton & Da Laet probably looking to fill the gaps. Leicester have shown an entertaining brand of attacking football playing a 3-5-2 formation for most of the campaign; and while that might change to 4-4-2 for tonight; Ranieri still believes in attacking & going for goals.
Bury have drawn 3 and lost 1 game into this campaign so far, but looking at their performances, they have not been able to cut it out defensively, leaking 10 goals in just 4 games; which will make things difficult against any opposition. While they are the newly promoted side, they are sitting in 16th spot with just 3 points from 4 games. Their focus will be survival in League One and that might see a lot of the team rotated to save energy for the weekend.
While their manager David Flitcroft has called on the fans to try and create an atmosphere to make it difficult for their opponents, I believe the Foxes will be able to handle this pressure after the pre-season experience as well as beating West Ham at home.
CAPITAL ONE CUP ACCUMULATOR
4 Team ACCA @ 5.46 – 1 point