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EFL Cup Quarterfinals Odds & Picks – (Dec 21-22)

Gary Gowers

by Gary Gowers in Soccer News

Dec 21, 2021 · 6:19 AM PST

Cesar Azpilicueta
Chelsea's Cesar Azpilicueta the ball during the English Premier League soccer match between Wolverhampton Wanderers and Chelsea at Molineux stadium in Wolverhampton, England, Sunday, Dec. 19, 2021. (AP Photo/Rui Vieira)
  • It is the quarterfinals of the English EFL Cup this week, starting with Arsenal vs Sunderland
  • Chelsea, who travel to Brentford, are +250 favorites to win the competition
  • We list the odds for all four games and preview three, offering our best picks

The EFL Cup, the second most prestigious cup competition in English soccer, has reached the quarterfinal stage with Arsenal taking on Sunderland on Tuesday with the other three ties – Brentford vs Chelsea, Liverpool vs Leicester City, and Tottenham Hotspur vs West Ham United – taking place on Wednesday.

Read on to see the odds and our best bets for three of the week’s action below.

EFL Cup Quarterfinals 2021-22

Matchup Home Draw Away
Arsenal vs Sunderland -435 +550 +1200
Brentford vs Chelsea +415 +265 -134
Liverpool vs Leicester City -121 +280 +330
Tottenham Hotspur vs West Ham United +125 +240 +230

All odds as of December 21 at Barstool

Brentford vs Chelsea Prediction

Brentford’s first season back in the top flight goes from strength to strength and they now have a chance to take a step towards Wembley glory with a home tie against their illustrious west London neighbors. While the Bees start as outsiders, they have been very good at home this season where they have recorded wins over Arsenal and Everton as well as drawing 3-3 with the mighty Liverpool.

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Having reached the semifinal of this competition last season, Brentford will be confident of a repeat against a Chelsea team that may include some fringe players. The Blues have faltered over the last few weeks, after leading the EPL for the majority of the campaign, and at the weekend dropped two vital points when drawing 0-0 with Wolves. Chelsea has won just once in their last five and now is a good time to play them.

This will be a tighter game than the odds suggest and, backed by a vociferous crowd at the Brentford Community Stadium, the Bees will be energetic and on the front foot. While the Blues of the King’s Road may edge through thanks to their extra quality, they may need extra time. Therefore, for me, the value is with the draw after 90 minutes.

Picks: Brentford & Chelsea to draw  (+265) 

Liverpool vs Leicester City Prediction

Leicester’s desire for Wembley glory has been increased by their FA Cup win back in May but they face a tough task to make it to the last four in the EFL Cup as Brendan Rodgers takes his team back to one of his former clubs. While Jurgen Klopp traditionally uses this competition as a chance to give game time to young/fringe players, with his squad in the midst of an injury/health crisis, his team will probably have a more experienced look than it would otherwise have had.

Leicester have their own issues in terms of team selection for that same reason – in defense Wesley Fofana, Caglar Soyuncu and Jonny Evans all look set to miss out – but in terms of squad depth, the Foxes fall short of the Reds.

One factor in Leicester’s favor is freshness as they have not played since hammering Newcastle 4-0 on December 12 while Liverpool was involved in an energy-sapping 2-2 draw with Tottenham on Sunday. This will be close but, for me, the extra quality and depth in the Reds’ squad will just seem them home by the odd goal.

Pick: Liverpool to win  (-121)

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Tottenham Hotspur vs West Ham United Prediction

Spurs’ excellent performance on Sunday, when they drew 2-2 at home with Liverpool, has set them up nicely for this London derby, while West Ham’s planned weekend clash with Norwich was postponed due to COVID-19 issues. After a two-week break of their own for the same reason, Spurs looked fresh and motivated against the Reds and a similar level of performance, if they can take their chances in front of goal, could be enough to beat the Hammers.

West Ham has a good record though at the Tottenham Hotspur Stadium and will be roared on by a massive and noisy traveling support who will demand a fiery, passionate performance from their team, especially after having recently hit a blip in the Premier League. A run of just one win in their last six and no goals in their last three has come at a bad time.

This will be a tight one though and could go to extra-time, but I fancy Harry Kane and Son Heung-min to do the business for Spurs. If Tottenham manages to get their noses in front early on, then they could get the job done in normal time.

Pick: Tottenham to win 2-0 (+950) 

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