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Listening Main Report: The League Cup

It is the final of the League Cup this weekend so on this week’s main report we  take a look at the third trophy of English football: The League Cup. You can listen to the report by clicking on the link below, while vocabulary support (in bold) appears at the foot of the report. Check out our glossary of footballing phrases here and if you have any suggestions or questions then contact us at


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This weekend sees the final of the Capital One Cup in England between Bradford City and Swansea City – two sides that have never won this trophy. But how much do you know about the third competition in England?

1960-61: First Trophy

The season that the competition first started. Not all league clubs took part in the inaugural event but Aston Villa ran out winners against then Second Division side Rotherham over two legs. Villa were back in the final two years later but this time they lost out to local rivals Birmingham City who won 3-1 on aggregate. Other winners in the early years of the competition include Chelsea, Leicester and Norwich who defeated lowly Rochdale.

1967: Third Division Winners

The first time a team from outside the top flight won this trophy was in 1967 when west-London side Queens Park Rangers surprised West Bromwich Albion 3-2 in the first final to take place at Wembley. It was also the first time that the final had been played in a single match rather than over two legs. Third Division side Swindon Town also managed to defeat top-tier opponents in the final when they beat Arsenal 3-1 after extra time in 1969.

8: Liverpool’s Record

Liverpool now have 8 League Cup victories after their win in 2012 against Cardiff City. The Reds first won the League Cup in 1981 – the first of four wins in a row. They have also been defeated on three occasions meaning that they have the most appearances in League Cup finals. The second most successful side is Aston Villa with 5 wins followed by Chelsea, Manchester United, Nottingham Forest and Tottenham with four wins.

3: Penalty shoot-outs

At the start of the competition way back in the 1960s, if the final ended in a draw then extra-time would be played and then a replay – there have been 18 of them – if the teams still needed to be separated. The first penalty shoot-out was in 2001 when Liverpool beat Birmingham City on spot kicks after a 1-1 draw. The Merseysiders did the same last season to beat Cardiff, while Manchester United beat Spurs on penalties in the 2009 final after a scoreless draw.

Vocabulary support

  • the inaugural event: The first ever event
  • ran out winners: They won
  • in a row: Consecutively, one after another
  • The Merseysiders: Nickname for Liverpool
  • on spot kicks: On penalties

Check out our glossary of footballing phrases here If you have any suggestions, contact us at

Learn English Through Football
Learn English Through Football
Learn English Through Football

Welcome to the website that helps students interested in football improve their English language skills. Soccer fans can enhance these skills with lots of free language resources: a weekly podcast, football phrases, explanations of football vocabulary, football cliches, worksheets, quizzes and much more at

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