League Two side Colchester United will travel to Manchester United in the quarter-final of the Carabao Cup. The U’s have already beaten two Premier League sides, Crystal Palace and Tottenham Hotspur, on their way to this stage. Meanwhile, Oxford United in League One will host the current holders Manchester City, who are on a 13-game unbeaten streak in this competition.
Carabao Cup Quarter-Final
Dream or Nightmare for Colchester?
With the prospect of a two-legged semi-final on the horizon, a stage that Burton Albion reached last season, Colchester will have been forgiven for wanting an easier draw. Being the lowest-ranked side left in the draw for the Carabao Cup quarter-final will, of course, have made that difficult, but if those were Colchester’s aims then Manchester United away is not the ideal scenario.
However, there seems to be a common understanding among the lower sides in this competition that it is there to be enjoyed rather than won. Colchester have certainly done that so far, beating Palace and Spurs, and there’s an argument that with no pressure on them to get a result, a trip to Old Trafford could bring the best out of them.
Liverpool to Forfeit?
With Liverpool drawn away at Aston Villa, the hosts could be the first team to make the semi-finals after Jurgen Klopp revealed the Reds could drop out of the competition if a suitable date for the tie is not found.
The current dates for the quarter-finals are in the same week that Liverpool are due to take part in the Club World Cup, which would cause a huge fixture pile-up for Klopp’s side.
Considering Liverpool played a youthful side at home to Arsenal, with both Caoimhin Kelleher and Curtis Jones the heroes in the shoot-out after a stunning 5-5 draw, there’s no reason why they cannot do that again and send a more experienced team to the Club World Cup.
Liverpool already survived a scare in this season’s competition when they were just handed a fine for fielding an ineligible player in their third-round tie away at MK Dons.
Draw in Full
Oxford United v Manchester City
Manchester United v Colchester United
Aston Villa v Liverpool