Friday, 29 July 2011

The New Domestic English Football Season 2011/2012 Has Arrived

It seems a long time since the FA Cup final back in May, and even longer was the fateful day Arsenal turned up at Wembley to collect their Carling Cup only to be turned over by Birmingham City, this seemed to be the trigger for the end of the Arsenal fight on all fronts. That game was played in front of 88,851 screaming fans and countless TV viewers and radio listeners. The date was the 27 February 2011 and unbeknown to all that result was going to have an effect on the 2011-2012 Carling Cup competition.

A number of years ago the authorities brought in a rule in England stating that any side qualifying for European competition would get a bye to the third round of the Carling Cup. This was to save a game for those tired footballers that had to fly around Europe in Business Class (stay focused Martin don't get side tracked). As Birmingham won the Cup they get a bye to the third round of the competition, and because they were relegated it means that there is now an odd number of sides in the first round of the cup! This is an interesting scenario as it hasnt come up before in this competition - we had a similar issue when Man United decided to play in the Club World Championship rather than fulfill their domestic obligations and play in the FA Cup.

The solution to this problem was that the 2 lowest ranked sides would have a play off to see who will go into the first round of the Carling Cup proper. The 2 lowest ranked sides from last season playing in this seasons competition are Crawley Town and AFC Wimbledon, the 2 sides promoted from the Conference. It seems a shame that one of these 2 will miss out on playing a more lucrative first round tie however it seems the logical solution.

So tonight, 29 July 2011 the Carling Cup begins when Crawley Town entertain AFC Wimbledon. The winners will go on to play away at Crystal Palace. This seems rather interesting as Wimbledon used to be tenants at the home of Crystal Palace before they upset many people and decamped to Milton Keynes. Are the footballing gods looking down on us and telling us that Wimbledon will get their day at Selhurst Park or will the match go the way of big money spenders Crawley?

Last season these sides both won the home fixtures against each other, so i believe this game will be closer than the bookies seem to want to make out.
Crawley are available at 8/11 , its 5/2 the draw and Wimbledon a huge 10/3.

If nothing else this game may give a us a view to how the teams have got on in the summer recruiting players and how well they will gel in the early weeks of the season.

So here we go! the domestic football season gets underway tonight, probably for the first time its before the Charity Shield (or community shield) that is the season curtain raiser. For me, I may watch the game and look at some in play markets.

To see my bet status click here

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