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Confusion over Carabao Cup second-round draw

Confusion reigned in the second-round draw for the Carabao Cup on Thursday night.

Drawn in the Sky Sports studios by Alex McLeish and John Salako, alongside host Julian Warren, things appeared to go awry early on as the Southern Section took shape.

The draw was conducted with seeded teams being picked out, followed by whether they would be at home or away and then finally, their opposition.

But as Salako said Norwich would be away to Charlton, he appeared to realise that match and the previous three ties had been drawn the wrong way around.

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A number of affected clubs in the Southern Section, including Norwich, Charlton, Brentford and Watford, all tweeted about their confusion.

Watford initially reported an away tie against Bristol City, as per the draw, only to amend it to a home one.

Brentford tweeted: “we will be at home to QPR”, before following up with “or we might be away, we’re not quite sure!!”.

The English Football League later released the draw in full which confirmed the first four ties had been drawn incorrectly – bringing about memories of round one when Charlton were drawn twice.

That meant Brentford (v QPR), Ipswich (v Crystal Palace), Bristol City (v Watford) and Charlton (v Norwich) were all given away ties having initially thought they were at home.

Am EFL statement read: “In the Southern draw there was some confusion as to the home or away status of the first four ties. This has subsequently been clarified following a review of the TV output. The draw was in no way compromised.”

Southampton, beaten finalists last season, will play Wolves at home, and Sunderland were rewarded for Thursday night’s 1-0 first-round win at Bury with a trip to Carlisle.

Burnley will travel to local rivals Blackburn in one of several local derbies.

Newcastle will play four-time tournament winners Nottingham Forest while Birmingham will take on manager Harry Redknapp’s former club Bournemouth at St Andrew’s.

The seven Premier League clubs involved in European competition this season will enter the tournament in the third round, but all the other top-flight clubs were in the hat.

There was further added confusion with Newport put in the northern pot to avoid being drawn with West Ham, with both sides given clearance to play away.

Newport, whose pitch is being relaid and is not yet ready for football, were then drawn at home to Leeds but the tie will be played at Elland Road.

West Ham must play their tie away because the London Stadium will not be ready for football following the athletics World Championships, and they were handed a trip to Cheltenham.

The second-round draw for the Carabao Cup, as verified by the EFL, is:

Southern Section

QPR v Brentford, Crystal Palace v Ipswich, Watford v Bristol City, Norwich v Charlton, Cheltenham v West Ham, Brighton v Barnet, Cardiff v Burton, Southampton v Wolves, Fulham v Bristol Rovers, MK Dons v Swansea, Birmingham v Bournemouth, Reading v Millwall

Northern Section

Carlisle v Sunderland, Bolton v Sheff Wed, Accrington v West Brom, Newcastle v Nottingham Forest, Leeds v Newport, Stoke v Rochdale, Huddersfield v Rotherham, Middlesbrough v Scunthorpe, Doncaster v Hull, Blackburn v Burnley, Sheff Utd v Leicester, Aston Villa vs Wigan, Barnsley v Derby/Grimsby (PA)

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