Today’s League Cup draw saw the Cobblers drawn out with last year’s finalists Cardiff City in the First Round with the game due to be the curtain raiser for next season. The Bluebirds were beaten on penalties in last season’s final and will provide a tough opener to the 2012/13 season having also reached the Championship playoffs in May.
There’s an age old history between the clubs with the famous playoff success in ’97 rolling through the old Ninian Park en route to a memorable Sixfields win and a Wembley final success. There have been no meetings between the clubs since both were in League One back in the 2002/03 season which saw both clubs win on each other’s grounds. The only other time we’ve met in the League Cup also came in the ’97 promotion season so hopefully there’s some sort of omen there!
I like the idea and am glad of a home draw this time around. With the game coming, unusually, before the league season starts it’s a chance for Aidy Boothroyd to put together the side he wants for the league opener a few days later and one in which his side will have no pressure on going into it. Cardiff are a top Championship outfit but maybe the inconvenience of travelling a long way on a Tuesday night before the season starts could have a negative effect on them.
All in all I welcome it…it may be treated as a glorified friendly match but it could have been a lot worse from some of the potential opposition that were on the list. Bring it on! And now for Monday’s league fixtures announcement…