I’m sure it didn’t escape your attention: all three of the newly promoted clubs to the Premier League lost to lower league opposition in the Carling Cup after Norwich changed their entire team, Swansea made nine changes and QPR eight.
Brendan Rodgers described it as his worst night in football when Swansea lost to Shrewsbury but, surely, Rangers’ boss Neil Warnock was nearer an honest appraisal of what had happened when he said, reflecting on his team’s defeat by Rochdale, that “nobody cares about the Carling Cup”.
Sorry but, in my mind, these weren’t ‘cup upsets’: rather, it was a case of the top flight clubs getting priorities in the right order. Promoted clubs want to stay up, the likes of Steve Bruce’s Sunderland, who also lost, want further Premiership stability.
I ask you, if they had the choice now, would Birmingham fans prefer beating Arsenal at Wembley back in February or avoiding the relegation to the Championship that followed?