Saturday, June 14, 2008

Carling Cup First Round Draw

With all of the deserved hype surrounding Euro 2008, the 2008-2009 Carling Cup first round draw, which was conducted yesterday, has more than flown under the radar.

All 72 Football League clubs will be in action during the week beginning on August 11. The first round, therefore, is made up of 36 ties and is divided into North and South regions. Both regions are divided equally with a pot of seeded and unseeded teams based on the clubs' final positions in their respective league tables last season.

Remember, unlike the FA Cup, these are winner-take-all games that have to be settled that day. Extra time and penalty kicks are used if necessary.

North Region (home teams are listed first):

Preston North End vs. Chesterfield
Chester City vs. Leeds United
Leicester City vs. Stockport County
Sheffield United vs. Port Vale
Grimsby Town vs. Tranmere Rovers
Crewe Alexandra vs. Barnsley
Hartlepool United vs. Scunthorpe United
Derby County vs. Lincoln City
Notts County vs. Doncaster Rovers
Sheffield Wednesday vs. Rotherham United
Shrewsbury Town vs. Carlisle United
Wolverhampton Wanderers vs. Accrington Stanley
Bury vs. Burnley
Rochdale vs. Oldham Athletic
Nottingham Forest vs. Morecambe
Huddersfield Town vs. Bradford City
Macclesfield Town vs. Blackpool
Walsall vs. Darlington

South Region:

Coventry City vs. Aldershot Town
Milton Keynes Dons vs. Norwich City
Wycombe Wanderers vs. Birmingham City
Brighton & Hove Albion vs. Barnet
Gillingham vs. Colchester United
Southend United vs. Cheltenham Town
Swansea City vs. Brentford
Luton Town vs. Plymouth Argyle
Exeter City vs. Southampton
Watford vs. Bristol Rovers
Bournemouth vs. Cardiff City
Bristol City vs. Peterborough United
Charlton Athletic vs. Yeovil Town
Millwall vs. Northampton Town
Swindon Town vs. Queens Park Rangers
Crystal Palace vs. Hereford United
Dagenham & Redbridge vs. Reading
Ipswich Town vs. Leyton Orient

Aldershot Town are the reigning winners of the Conference League Cup, aka the Setanta Shield, and the Blue Square Premier division. The Shots will be making their first appearance in the Carling Cup as they've never been a part of the Football League in their brief history (founded in 1992). I'll be interested in seeing how they do against Coventry City, a team that was nearly relegated from the Championship last year but have a decent manager in Chris Coleman.

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