Creatively cropped to show Alex McLeish with the trophy he will retain.
Good news, everybody! We're not playing Blackburn in the 3rd round of the Carling Cup! Instead, sometime in the week of September 19th, Aston Villa will take on Bolton Wanderers (who have a fine new blog!) at Villa Park. As much as we all hate playing Blackburn, I think drawing them would have been better. Bolton are a team that Aston Villa should beat, but they will certainly put up more of a challenge than Blackburn did this past weekend. In the opening weekend of EPL play, the Wanderers crushed QPR in London by a score of 4-0. Last week, they performed better than anyone expected and gave Manchester City a scare while only losing 2-3. They're a cagey team, if nothing else. We'll obviously have more analysis of this matchup as it gets closer and as we find out more about Bolton this season than two games can tell us.
Elsewhere, those of you who love Birmingham schadenfreude will enjoy seeing their chances at a cup defense die miserably. They've drawn Manchester City at Ethiad Stadium. Our constant nemesis, the Rovers, have drawn either Leyton Orient or the Bristol Rovers. I hope it's the latter so we can have Rovers/Rovers as a matchup. Though it's a shame we drew Bolton and thus killed a Rovers/Wanderers match. So much traveling!
You can find the full draw results here. I'm not sure if these are as copyright protected as the EPL schedule/table, so you'll just have to click.