Jamie Carragher verdict on the EFL Cup format ahead of Liverpool clash

Liverpool FC via Getty Images
The former Liverpool defender has given his backing to the EFL Cup competition.

Jamie Carragher has spoken out in support of the EFL Cup, praising the competition's format ahead of Liverpool's quarter-final against West Ham.

Liverpool are hoping to reach the final four where they could face off against one of either Fulham, Chelsea or Middlesbrough. They triumphed in the competition during the 2021/22 season, beating Chelsea on penalties in the final at Wembley before then managing to secure a domestic double by also winning the FA Cup.

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A tie against the Hammers at Anfield will be the second time they've faced their opponents at home this season, as they triumphed 3-1 in late September. And while it is seen as a less-important competition by the bigger clubs in English football, Jurgen Klopp will not let up and pass up the opportunity for more silverware given they are the favourites to win the competition after their brilliant start to the season.

While it has been dubbed the 'Mickey Mouse Cup' by fans in the past, it has mostly been won by one of the 'top six' clubs across the past 20 years. In fact, since 2005, only Swansea City and Birmingham have broken the stronghold on the trophy as Tottenham, Chelsea, Manchester City and Manchester United have all won the cup alongside Liverpool.

Taking to X to share his thoughts, Carragher revealed that he is a huge fan of the Carabao Cup for its rules and format claiming that it is a much better spectacle having removed extra-time from knockout games. "There is more prestige in winning the FA Cup than the Carabao Cup, but the Carabao is a much better competition." He began.

"No replays, no extra time, we know the draw right away, & the cup final is not competing with the end of PL season & CL final a week later. #EVEFUL & #CHENEW straight to pens with no extra time, is a much better spectacle than an extra 30 mins of football when players are shattered & terrified of making a mistake. No more extra time in any competitions please!" One user interacted with him about the two-legged ties that are in place for the semi-finals - which is one thing that Carragher does want to see changed: "Yes, one off semi at a neutral ground midweek but not Wembley!".

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The draw for the semi-finals will take place following Liverpool's game tonight with the next round set to take place in the week commencing 8 January, 2024, with second leg fixtures taking place week commencing 22 January, 2024.

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