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When the World Cup is held in the summer, as it had been prior to the 2022 Qatar World Cup, there was always a lull after the final.

Fans, especially in America, were pumped to watch the games, then had to wait nearly six weeks before any of the big European leagues came back to play.

That will not be an issue this December.

The World Cup Final will be played on Sunday, December 18, and just over 48 hours later, domestic teams around England and Spain will be back in action in cup tournaments.

Do you like knockout round play like you just saw? You got it!

There will be 16 English teams playing in eight matches in the Carabao Cup Round of 16, with 56 Spanish sides still alive in the Copa Del Rey: both cups will be in action on Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday across ESPN+.

For fans–new and old–it allows a seamless transition back into games with only one day of rest. For bettors, who have taken to the World Cup in record numbers around America, it is an opportunity to keep rolling right into the rest of the domestic season, which will run through mid-June.

According to sports books in Maine and around the country, soccer wagering has exploded onto the scene over the last couple of years, and this World Cup is expected to surpass nearly all other events bar the Super Bowl: and it has gotten close to that number as well. 

With these tournaments resuming so close to the end of the World Cup–and remember, the Premier League (by far the biggest watched league in the world) is back on December 26.

If you are familiar with the Premier League, most fans (and bettors) will recognize some of those names on that 16-team list. But there are some lower league teams (the Carabao Cup is for all 92 teams in the Football League) that maybe you might not know. If you look at the odds to win the cup, the top 10 teams are all from the Premier League, while the last six are from the Championship, League One, and League Two of the English pyramid. Gillingham is the lowest-ranked team left, sitting 91st in the pyramid.

Here are the games that will take place in the Carabao Cup Fourth Round, as well as the odds to win the cup:

Carabao Cup Fourth-Round Matches

(Games played Tuesday, Dec. 20-Thursday, Dec. 22)

  • Blackburn Rovers vs Nottingham Forest
  • Charlton vs Brighton
  • Manchester City vs Liverpool
  • Manchester United vs Burnley
  • MK Dons vs Leicester
  • Newcastle vs Bournemouth
  • Southampton vs Lincoln City
  • Wolverhampton vs Gillingham

Carabao Cup Odds to Win

Manchester City         +175
Newcastle United       +400
Manchester United     +500
Liverpool                     +600
Brighton & Hove         +1200
Leicester City              +1400
Southampton              +2000
Wolverhampton          +2000
Bournemouth              +3300
Nottingham Forest     +4000
Burnley                        +6000
Blackburn Rovers      +10000
Milton Keynes Dons  +15000
Charlton Athletic       +20000
Lincoln City               +20000
Gillingham                 +50000

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