Sports Betting Tips

Carabao Cup Semi Final Preview and Coral New Player Offers

In England, the New Year in terms of football is a busy time in terms of cup action. Traditionally, the first Saturday in January always host the Third Round of the FA Cup and then this is followed by the first leg of the semi-finals of English footballs second cup competition, the Carabao Cup (or Football League Cup).

This year, the two semi-finals feature three top Premier League teams and a Championship side hoping to break into the Premier League for the first time this season and who have knocked out four Premier League teams, including Manchester United, on their way to this semi-final spot.

Only two from Manchester City, Bristol City, Chelsea or Arsenal will come through the two-legged semi-final to take their place at Wembley in late February to try and win the first silverware of the season and in this preview of both games, we are going to take a look at which of those teams will take the biggest stride to Wembley after this week’s matches.

The second leg of both these games takes place in a fortnight’s time and it will be interesting to see how each of these games is poised before those crucial second legs. Let’s begin our look ahead now by taking a closer look at tonight’s big game at the Etihad Stadium.

Carabao Cup Semi Final 1st Legs Previews and Tips

Tuesday 7.45pm – Man City v Bristol City

It’s a David v Goliath contest in Manchester tonight as Bristol City try to complete an incredible double over the two Manchester giants. Will Man City sweep all before them once again and reach another final? Let’s begin by checking out how both teams reached this stage of the competition.

How they reached the Carabao Cup semi-finals

Manchester City

  • First Round – Bye
  • Second Round – Bye
  • Third Round – 20th September – West Brom 1 Manchester City 2
  • Fourth Round – 24th October – Man City 0 Wolves 0 (City win 4-1 on penalties)
  • Quarter Final – 19th December – Leicester 1 Man City 1 (City win 4-3 on penalties)

Manchester City received a bye through the first two rounds of the competition as they were competing in European competition this season.

Bristol City

  • First Round – 8th August – Bristol City 5 Plymouth Argyle 0
  • Second Round – 22nd August – Watford 2 Bristol City 3
  • Third Round – 19th September – Bristol City 2 Stoke City 0
  • Fourth Round – 24th October – Bristol City 4 Crystal Palace 1
  • Quarter Final – 20th December – Bristol City 2 Manchester United 1


Bristol City have done remarkably well to knock out four Premier League sides en-route to this semi-final with Manchester City, but Lee Johnson’s men now face a team that is unbeaten domestically this season and which has lost just one game in all competitions this year (away to Shakhtar Donetsk in the Champions League, where City played an under-strength team anyway).

Pep Guardiola has routinely played a second-string side in this competition and I think that will continue here, but even so, this is still a City side packed with top quality star international players and I fancy them to take a decent advantage into the second leg. I’m backing Manchester City to win this one 2-0 which is a 13/2 shot with Coral.

Wednesday 8pm – Chelsea v Arsenal

These teams meet again just a few days after they battled out a 2-2 draw at the Emirates Stadium. However, both managers are likely to play weaker sides in this game due to crucial Premier League games taking place at the weekend.

How they reached the Carabao Cup semi-final


  • First Round – Bye
  • Second Round – Bye
  • Third Round – 20th September – Chelsea 5 Nottingham Forest 1
  • Fourth Round – 25th October – Chelsea 2 Everton 1
  • Quarter Final – 20th December – Chelsea 2 Bournemouth 1


  • First Round – Bye
  • Second Round – Bye
  • Third Round – 20th September – Arsenal 1 Doncaster Rovers 0
  • Fourth Round – 24th October – Arsenal 2 Norwich City 1
  • Quarter Final – 19th December – Arsenal 1 West Ham United 0

Both Arsenal and Chelsea received byes into the Third Round of the competition as they qualified for European competition this season.


Both these sides have tended to play less than full-strength teams in this tournament over the years and I cannot see that changing in this semi-final, especially with big Premier League matches for the teams at the weekend. Of the two, I think Chelsea’s team is the much stronger of the two and I feel they hold the advantage here.

Arsenal though have proven to be a thorn for Chelsea in recent times and Arsene Wenger’s side need to bounce back after their poor performance away to Nottingham Forest in the FA Cup. I can see this one being very tight and perhaps just one goal between the teams deciding it. I’m backing Chelsea to take a narrow 2-1 lead into the second leg. You can back this bet at 7/1 with Coral.

Coral Carabao Cup Semi Final New Player Offerscoral free bet

Top celebrate the first leg of the Carabao Cup Semi Finals, Coral Sport are offering potential customers the chance to sign up with one of two different starter offers available this week for these two games only.

First off for tonight’s Manchester City v Bristol City game, sign up with Coral and place your first bet of £1 on the special new customers only market of a goal to be scored in the game and if there is a goal scored in the Man City v Bristol City game, then Coral will pay you out at odds of 25/1. However, if the game finishes in a 0-0 draw, Coral will still pay you out a £5 free bet token as a consolation prize.

Alternatively, if you prefer to place a bet on the more evenly contested matchup between Chelsea and Arsenal on Wednesday evening, then Coral also have a fine New Customer Offer available for this game. Once again, all you need to do is register as a new customer, deposit some cash and then with your first bet place a £1 stake on the special yellow card to be shown market for the game. Once again, if a yellow card is shown in this London derby match, then Coral will pay you out at odds of 25/1. If by some miracle, no player is booked in the game, then Coral will reward you with a free £5 bet as a consolation prize.

However, that is not the only offer running on the big Chelsea v Arsenal clash on Wednesday with Coral as new and existing customers can earn themselves a free In Play bet worth £5 simply by placing a £10 bet on any pre-match market for that game. All you need to do is log in to your Coral account while the match is taking place after placing your qualifying £10 pre-match bet and your free In Play bet will be ready for you to wager while the game is in progress across a wide range of different In Play betting markets.

It is worth remembering that new customers can also accept the £20 in Free Bets standard New Player Offer that is available with Coral, which sees them place their first qualifying bet on any sport of £5 and when they do they receive £20 worth of free bets (in the form of four £5 free bets). All you need to do is ensure that the sports market you bet on with Coral is at odds of 1/2 (1.5) or greater.


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