PREVIEW: Tonight’s Capital One Cup ties

Eight third round ties take place

Don’t forget that the North London derby between Tottenham Hotspur and Arsenal takes place live on Sky Sports tomorrow night.

Aston Villa vs Birmingham City

Easily the biggest game of tonight’s fixtures, as Villa host their bitter rivals Birmingham live on Sky Sports. It is safe to say that these two don’t particularly like each other.

A defeat for the home team could see their manager Tim Sherwood come under serious pressure, they are still waiting for their first win at home this season and their first victory since the opening day of the campaign.

On the other hand, Gary Rowett’s side travel full of confidence. They currently sit seventh in the Championship, just outside the play-offs after a positive start to the season. This could the perfect chance for them to take the bragging rights.

The last time these two met in this competition was in the 2011 quarter-finals. Birmingham won 2-1 and would go on to win the trophy.

Fulham vs Stoke City

Mark Hughes’ Stoke travel to Championship side Fulham still searching for their first win of the season. They are yet to pick up three points in the Premier League and progressed through the last round of this competition after beating Luton Town on penalties.

Fulham have had an inconsistent start to their season, they currently sit 16th in the Championship but have aspirations of a top six finish this year.

It could be a close one but Stoke should have enough quality to see them through, especially with the likes of Xherdan Shaqiri and Bojan fit and raring to go.

The last time these two met in this competition was at the same stage in 2010, when Stoke progressed with a 2-0 victory.

Hull City vs Swansea City

High flying Hull host solid Swansea in what has the potential to be a decent cup encounter.

Despite being relegated to the Championship last season, Steve Bruce’s side have started this term well and currently sit fourth in the Championship as they look to bounce back to the Premier League at the first attempt.

The 2013 winners of this competition have also started the season well, Garry Monk’s men are seventh in the Premier League and are just three points off the top four.

Hull are set to Jake Livermore his first game back since he tested positive for taking cocaine.

Leicester City vs West Ham United

The first of two all-Premier League clashes tonight, as Claudio Ranieri’s unbeaten Leicester City host Slaven Bilic’s hard-to-beat West Ham.

These two sides have already met this season in the Premier League at Upton Park, when the Foxes took the three points back to Leicestershire after a 2-1 win.

However, the Hammers have improved significantly since then and have won their opening three away games at Arsenal, Liverpool and Manchester City.

Leicester are yet to lose in all competitions and West Ham are yet to lose on the road, something’s got to give.

Middlesbrough vs Wolverhampton Wanderers

An all-Championship clash at the Riverside, as high-flying Middlesbrough take on struggling Wolves.

Boro were the early season favourites to secure promotion to the Premier League after missing out last season in the play-off final; and they have certainly started well as they sit second in the table, which is the final automatic promotion spot.

Kenny Jackett’s Wolves will be very disappointed with how they’ve started their season, they currently sit 18th in the Championship table.

After narrowly missing out on the play-offs last year, they would have been hoping to go one better this year. However, they have started inconsistently and need to improve.

This is the first ever meeting between these two sides in this competition.

Preston North End vs AFC Bournemouth

It’s been contrasting starts for these two teams as Preston are yet to win in the Championship since there promotion from League One, whereas Bournemouth are settling nicely into their first ever Premier League campaign.

Eddie Howe will see this as an opportunity to progress and keep Bournemouth’s winning mentality going. On the other hand, Preston desperately need a win from somewhere; their only win this season was in the last round of this competition as they defeated a second string Watford side 1-0 at Deepdale.

This is also the first meeting between these two teams in the League Cup

Sunderland vs Manchester City

The second of two all-Premier League ties tonight sees Sunderland host Manchester City.

Sunderland are leaking too many goals and are rooted to the bottom of the Premier League with just two points, whereas their opponents are top of the pile and have won their opening five games without conceding.

This fixture looks a routine victory for City but the Stadium of Light has been a bit of a bogey ground for them in recent years.

The game is a repeat of the 2014 Capital One Cup final which City won 3-1.

Reading vs Everton

Steve Clarke’s Royals have been in excellent form at the Madejski Stadium, they are unbeaten at home and have won four of their last five games in all competitions.

They currently sit in the sixth and final play-off spot in the Championship.

Everton on the other hand have made a strong start to the Premier League campaign under Roberto Martinez, as they are currently sixth in the Premier League and three points off a Champions League spot.

The Toffees are also unbeaten in four away games in all competitions, winning two, drawing two, scoring eight and keeping three clean sheets.

This match-up should make for an intriguing battle.

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