Bradford City look to make history at Wembley
Bradford City could become lowest-ranked team to win League Cup, if they overcome Swansea City
Bradford City could become the biggest giant killers of all-time if they triumph at Wembley next month.
They are set to face Premier League opponents, Swansea City, in the Capital One Cup Final on Sunday 24th February.
If the Bantams beat the Welsh side, they will become the lowest-ranked team to ever win the League Cup.
With two unfashionable sides in the final, many people will probably say that top clubs in England do not care for the competition and again dismiss it as a ‘Mickey Mouse’ cup.
Just when we’d got used to the Carling Cup, it goes and changes its name again, which only seems to detract from its value.
The League Cup's constant change of sponsors, including Worthington, Rumbelows, Coca-Cola, Littlewoods and Milk Marketing Board, have not helped its cause.
However, the League Cup seems to have enjoyed a resurgence in recent years.
In the last ten years, it has been won by Manchester United on three occasions, Chelsea twice and Liverpool once, which seems to dispel the idea that the biggest clubs aren’t bothered about it.
In fact, this year’s final will the first since 2004 which hasn’t had one of the so called 'top four’ in it, the previous being when Middlesbrough beat Bolton 2-1.
No-one can say that Bradford don’t deserve their moment in the spotlight after beating Arsenal, Wigan and Aston Villa on their way to Wembley.
Beating Villa meant they became the first club from England's fourth tier for 50 years to reach a major cup final, the last team being Rochdale in 1962. The Bantams will be hoping to succeed where Rochdale failed, as they lost 4-0 to Norwich over a two leg final.
Bradford’s League Cup glory run is not their only claim to fame, as they are one of just two clubs to be elected to the Football League, prior to playing a single senior game, the other being Chelsea.
They have of course had their fair share of heartache with the fire at Valley Parade in 1985, sadly claiming the lives of 56 fans.
The League Cup final in February will not just be a momentous occasion for Bradford, but also for Swansea, as it will be their first major cup final appearance.
There have of course been other memorable giant killing winners of the League Cup, with then-third division side QPR defeating West Bromwich Albion in 1967, and just two years later, former Division Three side Swindon Town beat Arsenal.
If Bradford do win, they will not however be the lowest ranked winners of a major cup, as Tottenham triumphed in the FA Cup in 1901, whilst they were a non-league side.
Whatever the outcome on 24th February, the attendance will certainly be higher than the last time they met, in 2007 when just 7,347 saw a 2-2 draw at Valley Parade, while the clubs were in League One.
Swansea will be hoping February’s scoreline is different, as Bradford have won nine successive penalty shoot-outs, more than any other team in English history.
Despite Valley Parade only holding just over 25,000 fans, the club expect to sell all 31,000 tickets allocated to them for the final.
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