Do away goals count in the Carabao Cup semi-finals and will VAR be used?

    Anthony Elanga playing for Manchester United in the Carabao Cup
    The Carabao Cup has reached the semi-final stage (Picture: OLI SCARFF/AFP via Getty Images)

    The Carabao Cup semi-finals take place this week, with the four remaining sides battling it out to reach the final next month.

    Southampton host Newcastle United in the first semi-final on Tuesday night before Nottingham Forest entertain Manchester United on Wednesday, with the second legs set to take place next week.

    And with rules varying from one competition to another, find out if away goals will count in the semi-finals of the Carabao Cup and whether or not VAR will be in use.

    Will away goals count in the Carabao Cup semi-finals?

    Away goals will not count in the semi-finals of the Carabao Cup 2022/23.

    Instead, should the scores be level after the second leg of the semi-final, the match will head to extra-time and if required, penalties.

    Newcastle United player Dan Burn celebrates after scoring a goal in the Carabao Cup
    Newcastle will not have away goals to worry about in their clash with Nottingham Forest (Picture: Stu Forster/Getty Images)

    The English Football League (EFL) scrapped the away goals rule in 2018/19, which previously only came into force after extra-time in the semi-finals.

    The away goals rule was originally implemented to encourage attacking football by teams playing away from home.

    In June 2021, UEFA announced that the away goals rule would be scrapped in its club competitions from the 2021/22 season onwards.

    Will VAR be used in the Carabao Cup semi-finals?

    VAR will be used for the semi-finals of the Carabao Cup.

    This is the first time in this season’s competition that VAR will be utilised, with the technology absent from the earlier rounds.

    VAR was used in every round of the Carabao Cup in 2018/19 as part of a testing regime ahead of its implementation in the Premier League a year later.

    However, in 2019/20 the EFL opted against using VAR before the semi-final stage as the technology was only installed at Premier League grounds.

    This was aimed at providing a level of consistency across all matches to ensure that teams weren’t put at a disadvantage.

    VAR will also be used in the Carabao Cup final at Wembley on February 26.

    Despite calls for more VAR in the competition, the EFL have not confirmed if it will be used in earlier rounds from next season onwards, despite the fact that all Premier League grounds and the majority of Championship venues have the technology installed.

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