If you’re looking for the League Cup TV schedule for fans in the United States, you’ve come to the right place.
As for the League Cup, now known officially as the Carabao Cup (and previously as the EFL Cup and Capital One Cup), ESPN+ has the rights to the cup competition.
For the 2023/24 season, ESPN+ will be streaming games from every round of the competition. Matches are typically available live on select Tuesdays and Wednesdays at 2:45pm ET when the competition is being played.
For this year’s competition, if a game is tied after 90 minutes, there will be no extra time. Instead, games will go directly to penalty kicks to decide the winner.
Watch the English League Cup on ESPN+:
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League Cup TV schedule
All times are Eastern United States timezone
For the 2023/24 season, the first round of the League Cup games began in August. The final will take place in late February at Wembley Stadium in London, England.
League Cup History
The English Football League Cup, also known as the Carabao Cup, is one such tournament that has maintained its status and grown in prominence over the years.
Additionally, it has provided smaller teams with the opportunity to compete against larger clubs, thereby increasing the level of competition. Historic as it may be, drama has always been important to the League Cup.
Surprisingly, there have been some finals when seemingly hopeless underdogs have triumphed against seemingly insurmountable favorites. Most tournament climaxes have been entertaining and engaging for fans of all stripes.
With each passing year, this competition has established itself as a staple of English soccer. It is giving spectators a taste of historic moments, exciting matches, and a chance to see developing players in action.
Idea behind English League Cup
In the late 1950s, English lower-division teams were approached with the notion of a league cup tournament to help them bring in more money. Alan Hardaker, secretary of the Football League, was instrumental in developing the idea.
Thus, the first League Cup was held in the 1960-61 season. Despite criticism, the event swiftly gained momentum as teams eagerly welcomed the opportunity to compete for prizes outside the conventional league and FA Cup.
A novel aspect of the competition was the two-leg tie structure that existed prior to the semi-finals. Unpredictable results occurred due to the knockout format of the tournament, with lower-division teams sometimes surpassing their higher-flight opponents. The two-part final format persisted for a duration of six years.
How English League Cup came to be
From its modest origins, the tournament quickly gained popularity. Expectedly, it only led those clubs that had first rejected to participate to eventually join in. Their loss became apparent to them.
After a new decision in 1968 gave the winners a spot in Europe, interest in it skyrocketed. Those few remaining boycotting teams found the EFL Cup more appealing immediately after the ruling. Therefore, it became an indelible part of the season after that.
Penalty shootouts, which were introduced in the 1980s to resolve tied matches, were among the latest changes in the 80s. At this time, the Milk Marketing Board officially sponsored the League Cup, therefore it rebranded as the Milk Cup. Rumbelows, Coca-Cola, and Worthington’s were the tournament’s subsequent sponsors, and each of them made a lasting impression.
Prestige and European qualification
The Football League rebranded the League Cup as the EFL Cup in the 1990s after securing a title sponsorship agreement with the English Football League. It allowed the competition to undergo further evolution during that decade.
The champions were awarded participation into the UEFA Cup throughout this decade. Naturally, it added status and motivation for teams, marking a crucial turning point for the tournament.
Leading English soccer league clubs often sent strong teams to the English Football Cup throughout the 2000s. It has since solidified the tournament’s position as a premier domestic event.
Modern era and economic boom
Thanks to rich broadcast agreements and heightened commercial interest, English soccer’s financial stakes skyrocketed in the 2010s. As a result of this infusion of capital, teams began to see the EFL Cup as a serious opportunity for success and income production. After realizing the tournament was a stepping stone to European competition and a potential silverware windfall, top management started to give it top priority.
Using technology like Video Assistant Referee (VAR), the English Football League Cup has brought itself into the current age, making important judgments more fair and accurate. The new two-legged format for the semifinals is sure to up the stakes in the remaining rounds of the event.
The present era’s largest attendance in almost 30 years is a testament to the Cup’s success. Again, the ever-dramatic competition is a top priority for many of England’s major teams, and the League Cup serves as a platform for their younger players to shine.
Courtesy of World Soccer Talk, download a complimentary copy of The Ultimate Soccer TV And Streaming Guide, which features details on where to watch all of the leagues from around the world on US TV and streaming.
To find out when soccer games are on, download the free Soccer TV Schedules App which includes listings of all of the live soccer matches available in the United States (available on Apple iOS devices and Android devices).
Do you have any questions about the League Cup TV schedule? Let us know in the comments section below.
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