Aston Villa will face League Two’s Crewe Alexandra in the second round of the Carabao Cup.
Villa, team number one in the northern section of the second round draw, will head up to Cheshire, to Gresty Road, to face Crewe in a round of fixtures that commences on the week of August the 26th.
The opposition progressed after beating Jonathan Woodgate’s Middlesbrough in the first round on penalties. In regular time, Crewe scored in remarkable fashion after a cross cannoned into the net off a strikers face.
The second round of the Carabao Cup - the traditional League Cup trophy - will be Villa’s first cup match of the season and Head Coach Dean Smith may want to put himself into a position where Villa can make a run at the trophy should their league position stabilise later in the year. They can’t give themselves a chance of glory without progression from these early stages of the League Cup. The winner of this tie will go onto the third round of the tournament, where Premier League teams engaged in European competition such as Wolverhampton Wanderers and Liverpool will enter into the draw.
This early round may afford Villa the opportunity to rotate and see what they have in players such as Ezri Konsa and Marvelous Nakamba - two purchases who have yet to see action. It’ll also give rotation players like Henri Lansbury a chance to give Dean Smith a selection headache. Over the past few season, this competition in its various commercial gusies, has been a headache for a totally different reason. Villa have crashed out to Burton Albion, Middlesbrough and Luton Town over the years in morale-crushing defeats.
It’s time for Dean Smith to change that in his Carabao Cup debut for Aston Villa. Up the Villa.