During the late 1950s, the majority of senior English clubs equipped their grounds with floodlights. This opened up the opportunity to exploit weekday evenings throughout the winter.
The League Cup was introduced in the 1960–61 season specifically as a mid-week floodlit tournament. In the early years of the competition, many of the top teams declined to take part.
The switch from a two-legged home and away Final to a single game at Wembley greatly enhanced the status of the League Cup in 1967, Queens Park Rangers of the Third Division beating First Division opposition West Bromwich Albion in a memorable match.
Season 1969-70 saw the first time that all 92 League clubs entered the competition - something which became compulsory from season 1971-72 onwards.
In the last 10 years, following restructuring of European football, and the introduction of the restructured format of the UEFA Champions League, the League Cup was threatened with losing its UEFA Cup slot for its winners.
It has retained it thus far however, and along with France is the only nation to offer a UEFA cup slot to its second cup competition winners. Therefore it retains enough importance and popularity, especially with fans of clubs for whom the League Cup offers a realistic chance of qualifying for Europe.
Liverpool have won the Cup on the most occasions, with eight victories including four successive trophies in the early 1980s.
They have appeared ten times in the final overall, also a record. Thanks to winning the competition, Liverpool were able to complete two trebles of trophy wins, in 1984 and 2001.
Giant killings are less well remembered in the League Cup than the FA Cup due to the absence of non-league sides and the fact that many big clubs have fielded very under-strength sides when knocked out.
However, there have been some notable upsets, such as Fourth Division side Chester knocking league champions Leeds United out 3–0 en route to the semi-finals in 1974–75. In 1995–96, a youthful Manchester United side were thrashed 3–0 at home by York City in the second round, first leg.
Despite fielding a very strong side in the return game, United could only win 3–1 and went out 4–3 on aggregate. The 2010-11 League Cup competition was won by Birmingham City, who beat Arsenal
2-1 at Wembley on 27th February 2011.
The last season of the Carling Cup was won by Liverpool, who beat Cardiff City on penalties after a 2-2 draw.
The Football League Cup was sponsored by Capital One from the 2012-13 season onwards and Swansea City lifted the trophy after beating Bradford City in the Final.
Manchester City won the 2014 League Cup Final beating Sunderland 3-1 for their third win while Chelsea beat Tottenham Hotspur to win the 2015 Final.