Liverpool Favourites in Carling Cup Final Betting

Liverpool are the red hot favourites with the bookmakers to lift the Carling Cup this season.

The Reds twice came from behind to draw against Manchester City at Anfield to win the tie 3-2 on aggregate.

Having not won at Anfield for nine years, punters were advised to back the draw at best odds of 3.3 and the bet duly obliged.

Nigel De Jong scored from distance after 31 minutes to level the score on aggregate but a Steven Gerrard penalty 10 minutes later saw the advantage return to Liverpool.

Edin Dzeko put City in front for a second time after 67 minutes but Welshman Craig Bellamy, on loan at Cardiff City last season, struck on 74 to set up a final against the Bluebirds.

The night before, Cardiff City overturned a 1-0 deficit and beat Crystal Palace just as predicted.

Our advice was to back odds-on Cardiff to win in 90 minutes at odds of 1.8 and an early own goal from Anthony Gardner was enough to earn the home side a 1-0 victory.

While the bet came up trumps, it was not enough to secure passage to the final for Malky Mackay’s team.

Despite enjoying the lions share of possession and creating almost 20 chances, the score remained 1-1 on aggregate. Kenny Miller, Peter Whittingham and Aron Gunnarsson all saw efforts come back off the woodwork while Palace were reduced to 10 men from 78 minutes when Paddy McCarthy was sent off for a second bookable offence.

Both extra time and then penalties were required to separate the teams and when Miller blazed his effort high and wide it looked like it was not going to be City’s night.

But, goalkeeper Tom Heaton saved efforts from Jermaine Easter and Sean Scannell with Jonathan Parr shooting Palace’s make-or-break penalty over the bar.

Cardiff won 3-1 on penalties and booked a third Wembley final in four seasons.

Liverpool can be backed at current best odds of 1.17 (Sky Bet) to lift the trophy. If Kenny Dalglish’s side win, it will be the clubs first trophy since 2006 – when the Reds won the FA Cup and Community Shield a few months later.

Cardiff are rank outsiders and are available at 5.5 (bet365). The last time City won a trophy was in 2003 as Division Two play-off winners and of course they reached the FA Cup final in 2008 but were beaten by Portsmouth.

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