LAGOS, Nigeria (VOICE OF NAIJA) – The Carabao Cup semi-finals will no longer be two-legged ties after the 2023–24 season, in an effort to reduce fixture congestion for Premier League clubs.
According to the Daily Mail, the EFL has agreed to switch to one-off semi-final games as it has been in negotiations for a broadcast deal with Sky Sports starting next season, which includes no penalty charge for abandoning two-legged semi-finals.
Additionally, there is a proposed funding package from the Premier League worth £900 million over six years.
This proposal must first be approved by the 20 top-flight clubs, who have already been informed of the format change.
The League Cup, managed by the EFL and known by various sponsor names over the years, has featured two-legged semi-finals since its inception in the 1960–61 season.
Two-legged ties were also introduced for early rounds in the mid-1970s but were removed in 2001.
Fixture congestion has long been the primary reason for switching to single matches in the semi-finals.
However, as the competition is a major revenue source for the EFL, and the January semi-finals are of particular interest to broadcasters, various factors needed to align before the change could take place.
This season’s competition resumes this week, with eight fourth-round matches to be played over Tuesday and Wednesday nights.
The quarter-final draw will follow immediately after the conclusion of the Manchester United vs. Newcastle match.