Tottenham has gone nine seasons without adding a piece of silverware to its cabinet and, with Spurs manager Mauricio Pochettino coming under fire from some of his peers for not winning a trophy, one thinks that the team vacating White Hart Lane may target the English EFL Cup next season.
One tipped Manchester United to win the English EFL Cup at the beginning of this term because incoming Red Devils boss Jose Mourinho has a history of targeting competition wins in his first season managing a side. With Manchester United not in the UEFA Champions League, one suspected that Mourinho’s sights would be set on the English EFL Cup and so it proved because the Red Devils beat Southampton 3-2 in the final.
Pochettino is doing a fine job as Tottenham coach but never has the former Espanyol and Southampton manager won a title since quitting playing to become a boss. Leading Tottenham to its first English league championship since 1961 may be too tough an assignment next term because Spurs will be playing its home matches at Wembley Stadium, a venue at which they have struggled in UEFA events. That is why bookmakers are falling over themselves to lay Tottenham in English Premier League markets at almost double-digit odds.
The UEFA Champions League will be a terrific experience for Tottenham but almost certainly not a triumphant one, again not least because of the Wembley Stadium factor. One thinks that Tottenham’s best chance of breaking its lengthy trophy drought lies in one of England’s knockout competitions and, with the English EFL Cup semi-finals taking place over two legs, it favours the so-called big teams more than the English FA Cup does. The English EFL Cup has a reputation for being a tournament that England’s heavyweights do not take seriously but its last 13 editions have been won by Manchester United (four times), Chelsea (thrice), Manchester City (twice), Birmingham (once), Liverpool (once), Swansea (once) and Tottenham (once) – one would say that all of them except the Blues and the Swans are genuine superpowers. So it is a myth that big sides do not win the English EFL Cup.
One cannot conclusively rule out the rest of England’s big six from one’s English EFL Cup calculations but Arsenal’s focus will be on qualifying for the UEFA Champions League after missing out this season, Manchester United will be eager to break into the English Premier League top four, Manchester City will be desperate to make its mark on more prestigious competitions – particularly the UEFA Champions League and the English Premier League – and the same will apply to Chelsea. Liverpool is the English EFL Cup’s most successful side having won the tournament three times more than any other team so the Reds are well worth considering at odds of +900 with William Hill but one cannot get away from Tottenham at odds of +1200 with 188Bet and William Hill.
Many punters like to speculate on English EFL Cup outsiders but Everton will be lucky to hold on to Romelo Lukaku during the summer months and there was a massive gap between the seventh-placed Toffees and eighth-placed Southampton on the English Premier League ladder this term – 15 points to be precise. One would be surprised if one of England’s big six did not take out next season’s English EFL Cup and, while one would not blame anyone who dutched Tottenham and Liverpool, one rates Spurs as the standout wagers.
Tottenham to win the EFL Cup