A last-gasp equaliser from Kenwyne Jones denied Premier League new boys Norwich their first win of the season on Sunday, but with the Canaries facing League One opposition this evening it would be a big surprise if they were unable to chalk up their opening victory at the earliest possible opportunity.
Paul Lambert’s side are 3/10 to advance to the next round and 67/100 to win the tie in 90 minutes.
This makes MK Dons outsiders to make it through to the next round at 23/10, as well as to win in 90 minutes at 15/4, with a draw in normal time priced at 14/5.
Nevertheless, there are indications that MK Dons could cause an upset.
Norwich’s last game might have been against Stoke, but it is not too long ago that they were playing against their opponents this evening in League One.
Norwich’s promotion from the Championship came in the season after winning the 2009-10 League One title, meaning it is just two years since the Canaries and the Dons were in the same division.
MK Dons had the better of their two encounters that season as well, winning 2-1 at stadiummk in September 2009 and drawing 1-1 at Carrow Road in April 2010.
With Grant Holt, Chris Martin, Russell Martin, Adam Drury, Korey Smith and Simon Lappin from Norwich’s starting line-up in April 2010 all in contention to appear this evening, MK Dons should not be immediately discounted.
A repeat of the 1-1 draw in 90 minutes, priced at 23/4, could therefore tempt punters.
A successful £25 free bet on this scoreline, available to new customers who sign up for a bwin account, would return £168.75.
There is also Norwich’s abysmal recent cup record to consider.
They might be two-time winners of the League Cup, but the Canaries have not got past the third round since the 1995-96 season, and included in that run is a 1-0 defeat by MK Dons in the first round of the 2008-09 competition.
However, Norwich have improved significantly since they were last in League One, and even allowing for the fact that some of the squad remains the same the Canaries should be able to safely navigate their way into round three.
Indeed, the fact that some of their players have experience of playing in League One could even work to their advantage as they will know exactly what to expect.
With Norwich up for a battle and having only lost one game at Carrow Road in 2011, victory should be assured even allowing for a start to the season which has seen MK Dons storm to the top of the League One table.
And with the Canaries scoring more than two goals per game on average last season, they should have no problem overcoming a 1-0 handicap and winning by two clear goals at odds of 17/10.
That said, MK Dons should also get on the scoresheet given Norwich’s often cavalier approach and the fact they have scored 11 goals in their opening four League One matches this season.
As such, betting on both teams to score at odds of 13/20 could be a good option.
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