Do drawn Carabao Cup games go to extra-time and penalties? A look at the new rules ahead of Blackpool and Fleetwood Town's first round ties
Blackpool and Fleetwood Town get their Carabao Cup campaigns underway this week.
The Cod Army are up first, making the trip to Hillsborough tonight to take on Sheffield Wednesday (7.45pm kick-off).
Simon Grayson's men will be looking for a repeat of last season's run, where they made it to the third round where they were eventually beaten by top flight side Everton.
The Seasiders, meanwhile, were unfortunate to be knocked out by Stoke City in the first round.
Neil Critchley's men were the better side during the 90 minutes, but it was the Potters who secured their spot in the next round after winning on penalties.
Blackpool host fellow Championship side Middlesbrough in the first round this season, the game kicking off a day later on Wednesday.
This is due to Neil Warnock's side being in league action on Sunday afternoon against Fulham.
Should both Blackpool and Fleetwood make it through, they will feature in the second round where ties are played the week commencing August 23.
Premier League teams enter the competition at this stage, apart from those involved in European games.
There have been a handful of changes to the format of the Carabao Cup over the last couple of seasons due to the Covid-19 pandemic.
Here is everything you need to know ahead of the 2021/22 iteration.
All matches that end as a draw in the first five rounds will go straight to penalties without the use of extra time.
This was a unanimous decision between the teams that compete in the competition who felt there were already enough games, especially the EFL teams.
This limits the amount of unnecessary football that is played by the involved sides with many already viewing the Carabao Cup as an unwanted distraction away from the league.
Both semi-finals and the finals will, however, involve extra time if the match cannot be decided within 90 minutes.
There was a time, following the pandemic-induced break, where teams were allowed to make five substitutions. But this is no longer the case.
Teams will be able select seven players on the bench and can make three substitutions throughout the 90 minutes.
If the semi-finals or final go to extra time then the teams involved will have the option to make another sub within the additional 30 minutes.
The semi-finalists of this year’s Carabao Cup will be decided before the new year with the opening four rounds all being played in what is left of 2021.
Despite the semi-finals being two-legged ties previously, they are now played as one-off matches in line with the rest of the competition.
The schedule is as follows:
Carabao Cup Round Two - w/c August 23, 2021
Carabao Cup Round Three - w/c September 20, 2021
Carabao Cup Round Four - w/c October 25, 2021
Carabao Cup Quarter-Finals - w/c December 20, 2021
Carabao Cup Semi-Final first legs - w/c January 3, 2022
Carabao Cup Semi-Final second legs - w/c January 10, 2022
Carabao Cup Final – Sunday, February 27, 2022
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