EFL Cup: Man United new favourites after favourable semi-final draw
Manchester United are the 6/5 favourites to win this season’s EFL Cup, after the Red Devils’ 4-1 demolition over West Ham was rewarded with a semi-final clash with Hull.
In doing so, Jose Mourinho’s men avoided Liverpool and Southampton and will be heavy favourites to reach the final at Wembley in February.
Liverpool defeated Leeds on Tuesday night, while Hull overcame Newcastle on penalties.
Jurgen Klopp’s charges are 7/5 second-favourites to go one better than last season, when they were defeated by Manchester City in the showpiece.
But many will be fancying Southampton for a surprise success at 6/1, after the Saints confidently knocked Arsenal out of the tournament.
A rock-solid defence led by star man Virgil van Dijk, coupled with two first half goals, was more than enough for Claude Puel’s side to end Arsene Wenger’s hopes of a first League Cup success.
Had this been the FA Cup, Hull may well be worth a punt too at 16/1, but with a two-legged tie versus United to overcome, it’s a tall order for Mike Phelan’s men.
But Swansea’s victory in 2014 shows that even in the modern era, teams outside the established order can prevail.
Liverpool’s two-legged tie with Southampton should be highly intriguing, with the south coast club already shutting out the Anfield outfit earlier this season.
But if United continue producing the football which saw Slaven Bilic’s men swept aside at Old Trafford, they’ll be hard to beat should they reach the final.
The impressive result saw another fine performance from Henrikh Mkhitaryan, and it now remains to be seen whether the Armenian has forced himself into Mourinho’s first-team plans on a regular basis.
The semi-final first-legs will take place on the week commencing January 9, with the return fixture a fortnight later.
This season’s final is scheduled for the February 26.
All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing