Capital One Cup ambassador Peter Beagrie was speaking to Jamie Holt…..
We are all desperate for the start of the new football season, and this week’s Capital One Cup draw has enabled the build-up to begin in earnest with two Greater Manchester clubs handed difficult first-round ties.
Facing his first pre-season as a manager, Oldham’s Lee Johnson will bid to overcome Nigel Clough and Derby County of the Championship at Boundary Park, with the League One outfit I’m sure hoping to re-live their fantastic cup run of last season.
Meanwhile Keith Hill must take his Rochdale side to Championship newcomers Doncaster Rovers, who now of course have ex-Oldham boss Paul Dickov in charge.
It will be a tough ask for both sides to progress but there is a lot of magic in the Capital One Cup so who knows what might happen?
Dickov has taken charge at the Keepmoat Stadium to replace Brian Flynn despite the latter taking Rovers to the League One title last term.
Doncaster is a good fit for Paul. He will find it tough, very, very tough, they will certainly have one of the smallest budgets.
They tried it the other way when Doncaster were the Championship’s equivalent to the Harlem Globe Trotters and they had a squad to rival QPR’s that is now coming down to the Championship.
That will not happen again, so he will have to beg, steal and borrow and use his acumen to try and get results for Doncaster, starting with their winnable tie against League Two Dale.
We had Paul in for one of the Sky games at Leicester, and he was very pleased that after his stint at Oldham, and after a couple of very good FA Cup performances against Liverpool and Everton, that the phone was ringing and there were still opportunities.
It’s always worrying as a manager when it doesn’t work out the first time; you worry if that will be your first and last opportunity. He has a brilliant attitude and he’s very good as far as his links are concerned which should help him build a squad capable of taking on Dale in this clash.
The Capital One Cup is a good barometer for clubs like Rochdale and Oldham to see if they need a few additions and if they have got enough as far as the squad is concerned.
It is a competition that has always endeared itself to the players and it’s certainly held in high esteem.
Oldham will be hoping to get the better of Derby County but that won’t be an easy task against Nigel Clough’s men.
Nigel’s primary focus again will be keeping the youngsters that he has blended into an incredible outfit.
They have some tremendous players, some brilliant individuals who have got admirers from Premier League clubs, and that’s testament to the type of player that they have got there.
Last year’s Capital One Cup was amazing. There were goals galore with that Reading-Arsenal game and then my old club Bradford went all the way to the final.
I’m looking forward to it starting all over again.
Peter Beagrie was speaking on behalf of credit card company Capital One, sponsor of The League Cup.