Carabao Cup helping to bring feel-good factor to the London Stadium

London Stadium

Many in England scoff at the Carabao Cup. A competition sponsored by an energy drink which is hardly ever actually seen in shops, with a blooper in pretty much every draw, the competition is a laughing stock to some. It’s one of them things in football where you want to win it if you’re in the competition, but most people aren’t that fussed when they’re knocked out of the ‘Mickey Mouse Cup’.

West Ham are still in the cup and having not won silverware for years they would absolutely love to win it. Their manager would too, as Manuel Pellegrini has openly expressed his desire to do well in the competition which he won twice during his time with Manchester City. However, this year the Carabao Cup has arguably meant more than silverware for the Hammers, as it has provided a feel good factor at the London Stadium which surely played its part in the positive recent results.

Yes, the two games so far have been against AFC Wimbledon and Macclesfield Town, from League One and League Two respectively, but that doesn’t matter. This competition has undoubtedly helped the Hammers settle into a season which has seen plenty of change regarding both the playing and managerial staff.

The match away at Kingsmeadow saw West Ham pick up their first competitive victory of the season with a 3-1 win. It wasn’t the greatest performance but it afforded Pellegrini a sigh of relief which the league hadn’t provided him by that point. Having struggled against Arsenal on his debut, Issa Diop put in a commendable performance, scoring a brilliant goal from range. Chicharito was handed a rare moment of joy as his shot in the dying moments crept into the net.

Having seen form pick up after that result, with a win against Everton and draw at home to Chelsea in the league, the Macclesfield match was an opportunity to keep the feel-good factor at the London Stadium. That was certainly achieved. After enduring tough starts to life in East London Ryan Fredericks and Lucas Perez both got their first goals in claret and blue. Robert Snodgrass continued the rejuvenation of his West Ham career as he got his first ever West Ham goals (as well as two assists).

It was also a brilliant evening for the academy: Grady Diangana made his debut, scored two goals and secured the man of the match award, Declan Rice ran the midfield when he came on for the injured Carlos Sanchez, Conor Coventry looked comfortable in the middle of the park when he came on for his debut and Joe Powell, another debutant, got two assists. Also, let’s be honest, it’s not very often we’ll see West Ham win 8-0, even if it is against the team sitting at the bottom of League Two.

As the draw for the next round approaches following today’s 3-1 win against Manchester United, West Ham’s supporters should watch on with excitement. It may not have given the club any glamour matches so far, but the Carabao Cup has undoubtedly contributed to the positivity that currently surrounds the London Stadium. Especially following the team’s upturn in form, this competition offers the Hammers a chance to inject further excitement into their season, not to mention a chance of silverware and a place in the Europa League. That’s not something to be laughed at.


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