Striker Scott McDonald scored the winner in Middlesborough's League Cup win over Sunderland. Image courtesy of skysports.com
Swansea City has solidified its spot in the Premier League under new manager, Danish legend Michael Laudrup, but the challenge is on for the club to lift its first piece of major silverware. In 2006 the club won the Football League trophy, featuring the 48 teams from the third and fourth tiers of English League Football, but a win over Middlesborough on Thursday morning (AEDT) will see the Welsh side in the final four of the League Cup.
Swansea was on a six-game unbeaten run in the EPL until the weekend until they conceded three goals in the first half against Norwich, eventually going down 4-3 . It was just the club’s second home loss this season, but it has a chance to atone at the Liberty Stadium. The Swans’ two previous League Cup matches this campaign were both away fixtures, with a 3-1 win over former manager Brendan Rogers’ new club Liverpool preceded by a 3-2 victory over League One outfit Crawley Town. The Swans defeated Barnsley 3-1 in the second round.
Middlesborough reached the final eight of the League Cup after Australian striker Scott McDonald netted his fourth goal of the season to secure a 1-0 derby win over Sunderland at the Stadium of Light. The clash against Swansea will be the fifth straight time ‘Boro has played away in the cup this season, following a 3-1 victory over Preston in the third round, as well as wins over Bury and Gillingham.
The Teesiders sit third in the Championship, and were travelling nicely until they suffered three losses in four outings from mid-November. They got their season back on track at the weekend with a 3-2 win over pitiful Peterborough. McDonald has been in hot form of late, scoring three goals in back-to-back matches against Huddersfield and Birmingham late last month. He has three League Cup goals in four competition appearances since joining ‘Boro in early 2010.
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