Carling Cup free-for-all on Five Live

 by Martin Belam, 21 September 2004

Tonight was the second round of the little loved Carling Cup, when all the Premiership teams (except those who have qualified for European football) join in the "fun". You know a competition is on its last legs when even teams like Bolton, Preston and Sunderland are resting their first team and making up to ten changes from the players they put out on Saturday and Sunday in the league.

This evening made for a great listen on Five Live though, as they dispensed with the approach of one commentary from one match, and instead indulged in a round-robin surround sound open mic free-for-all reporting spree from all the grounds. The constant switching between stadia brought a kind of manic excitement to the evening, and many correspondents resorted to just bellowing "Goal at Upton Park! / Penalty For Wolves!" etc to attract attention when they wanted the producer to feature them. What with Chris Waddle posing trivia quizes throughout the night, the concrete cows making an appearance at Franchise FC's temporary home, and the constant bickering of "You are boring, let's go somewhere else", it sounded more like a bunch of mates down the pub watching lots of different matches on different TV screens than a radio broadcast. Great, great fun.


"even teams like Bolton"?? I don't see anything special about a club who are 4th in the Premiership resting their first team players?

Fair point this season - but they rested their players all through the early rounds last year as well.

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