The Capital One Cup – better than the FA Cup?

Well, what a truly mesmerising two days of football that has been? A 7-5 thriller between Arsenal and Reading on Tuesday, while Chelsea and Manchester United tried in vain to replicate the 12 goal ‘slobberknocker’ with the Blues taking their Premier League rivals to extra time before securing a 5-4 win to take them into the quarter finals of the Capital One Cup.

Fans at the Madejski  Stadium, Stamford Bridge and watching live on TV were treated to a spectacular 21 goals in 240 minutes of football; the equivalent of the ball hitting the back of the net every 11.42 minutes.

Naturally, it gave the Capital One Cup some much needed publicity, with many fans referring to the competition as the ‘Micky Mouse Cup’. Yet, with every encounter needing to be decided “on the night”, has the past weeks action seen it leapfrog the FA Cup as the countries’ top domestic cup competition?

The tournament doesn’t affect league duties from those left involved and as previously mentioned, every encounter is brought to a conclusion on the evening, bar the two-legged semi final, be it in normal time, extra time or on penalties.

While numerous managers often take a relaxed approach to the Capital One Cup, Arsene Wenger recently insinuated that the Premiership will take a priority for example, it gives fans the chance to bear witness to the club’s up and coming stars, with Arsenal supporters treated to the impressive displays of young German duo Serge Gnraby and Thomas Eisfeld during the 7-5 win over the Royals.

The only downside of the competition is the availability to club’s in England, with the 92 clubs from the Premiership to League 2 allowed to enter, unlike the FA Cup where every team has the chance to compete.

Nevertheless, after a sour week for football, involving inconsistent referring and linesman decisions and racism rearing its ugly head once again, it’s a welcome relief to have been treated to two Capital One Cup encounters that have fans talking about the game itself rather than the awful aspects that have associated itself with football in recent months.