There are four teams left in the EFL Cup and this week we will find out which of those four will make it to EFL Cup final at Wembley. Of the clubs remaining, we have three of the biggest clubs from the Premier League, and Bristol City a team from the Championship, who have played some great football to compete with big clubs in this competition. They have already knocked out Manchester United and this week they have the task of coming from behind to beat Manchester City.
Bristol City should be extremely proud of the way they played when visiting Manchester a few weeks ago. They threw everything they had at Manchester City, showed no fear against them and performed a lot better than most Premier League teams have done against City so far this season. There may have been a little complacency from Manchester City in the first leg, but after seeing Bristol City play, I am sure that is no longer there for Pep Guardiola’s men, they will take this game extremely seriously. City are on course to win the Premier League, and they will want to add further trophies to that. This may not be the biggest and most important trophy on their agenda, but it is still silverware and they will want to reach the final to give them a shot at lifting it.
The London clash between Arsenal and Chelsea promised so much going into the first leg, but ultimately that was a disappointing game. We should see a lot better here, but based on the game we saw in the first leg, expect to see another low scoring affair. Both teams have the ability to score goals in their squads, and the starting 11 from both of them will be interesting to see. Both tried to rest some players last time, in an effort to save tired legs while they were going through a busy period. I don’t expect to see that to the same extreme this time around, which should give us a better game, and one with more goalscoring chances in it.
Our Predictions for the Semi-Finals
Bristol City 1-2 Manchester City
Arsenal 0-1 Chelsea
What Games are on TV?
Bristol City vs Manchester City – Tuesday 19:45, Sky Sports Football
Bristol City gained a lot of admirers with the way they performed in the first leg of this tie. They showed no fear against Manchester City, took the game to their big money rivals, and nearly pulled off what would have been the shock of the season. They will head into the second leg with plenty of hope, and who knows what will happen, after seeing Bristol City beat Manchester United on their home pitch earlier in this trophy, they will certainly have belief in the camp.
Manchester City may have taken Bristol City a little lightly in the first leg, but they are certain to not do the same here. I expect Pep Guardiola to take all his big names to Bristol, and be fully prepared for the battle that is waiting to greet them.
In terms of quality, there should be only one winner of this game and that is Manchester City. They will be better prepared for this one, and that is going to be the difference maker I think, giving them
the win and a place in the EFL Cup final. Bristol City love to attack, and that is what they are sure to do, even against the might of Manchester City, just like they did in the first leg. However, I don’t think they are going to have enough, and it looks like being Manchester City who make the EFL final, and that keeps their hopes alive of lifting four trophies this season.
Arsenal vs Chelsea – Wednesday 20:00, Sky Sports Football
The first leg of this game was a disappointing affair, and because of that, it is hard to predict what is going to happen in the second leg. The game was the complete opposite to the Bristol City vs Manchester City game, with few scoring opportunities. One reason for that was the number of changes each team made before the game, giving other players a chance to perform. That would have affected the team chemistry on both sides, and hopefully, that won’t happen as much in the second leg because I expect both to play similar teams to their first choice eleven.
Arsenal arrive here after a great 4-1 victory over Crystal Palace, while Chelsea also scored four in their 4-0 victory over Brighton. That doesn’t necessarily mean that there will be goals in this one though, and another low scoring game could be on the cards, which is unfortunate for the neutrals.
Both clubs have gone through rough patches when they have struggled to fire, but Chelsea appear to be playing the better football right now. Arsenal have only won one of their last four games and while Chelsea are not doing too much better, there is more hope for them after they have won three of their last five.
Chelsea struggled to get past Norwich in their FA Cup replay last week, and that may have been due to complacency more than anything else, something they won’t have here. They are one step away from the EFL Cup final and need to go and win away at Arsenal to do so. This is a big game, featuring two London rivals, but Chelsea appear to just have the edge in what should be a very close game, which could again be low scoring like the first leg.
After being very encouraged with how they performed in the first leg, I am sure a lot of small punters will be happy to risk a few pounds on Bristol City beating the Premier League giants Manchester City. You can back Bristol City at 14/1 with multiple bookmakers to win the game, or they can be backed at 25/1 with Betfair to qualify for the final.
If you think Manchester City can do enough to qualify for the final then you can back them to win 2-1, just like they did in the first leg and that is available at 15/2. The 1/4 on Manchester City to win the game may not appeal to many, but those who are looking for accumulator teams for the week may be interested in them at that price.
There was little to separate Arsenal and Chelsea in the first leg and if you think another draw may be on the cards then that can be backed at 5/2 with many different bookmakers. If you think we will see another 0-0 game, and the game will go into extra time then you can back that at 12/1. For those looking on who watched Chelsea defeat Norwich by penalties in the FA Cup last week, the same again, Chelsea to win on penalties is priced up at 33/1 with Bet365.
If you think Arsenal can make home advantage count in the game then you can back them at 2/1 to win in 90 minutes, or at 6/5 to qualify for the final. If you are looking for a correct score bet to place on Arsenal, then you can back them at 12/1 to win the game 1-0, if you think they will sneak a win against their rivals.
Bet365 – Bore Draw Money Back
This is one that is eligible for both games but is especially of interest for the Arsenal and Chelsea clash, which ended 0-0 in the first leg. If you place a bet on the correct score, half time/full time or score cast markets and the game you bet on finishes 0-0 then you will receive your money back in cash. This is a great insurance offer, and covers your bets should the same happen in the Arsenal vs Chelsea game as it did in the first leg.
William Hill – Acca 5 insurance
While there are only two EFL Cup games, many people will be looking to bet on these games alongside other games, to allow them to place an accumulator bet. If that is what you are looking to do and you are going to pick five or more teams then take a look at the William Hill acca five insurance offer. This offer will give you your money back as a free bet on accumulators where you have five or more selections and one of them lets you down. It is not a nice feeling to come close to a big win, but the insurance of getting your money back is a small consolation and will pay for your next bet.