Charlie Nicholas backs Southampton to oust Liverpool in his Capital One Cup predictions

Charlie Nicholas
Image: Charlie Nicholas backs Southampton to see off Liverpool at St Mary's

Charlie Nicholas provides us with his Capital One Cup predictions as the final eight battle it out for semi-final spots.

Three of the four ties take place on Tuesday night with Sky Bet Championship promotion favourites Middlesbrough hosting Everton, before Liverpool travel to Southampton on Wednesday evening, also live on Sky Sports 1HD. 

Here's who Charlie is tipping to progress...

Middlesbrough v Everton (Tuesday 7.45pm, live on Sky Sports 1HD)

Everton's Belgian striker Romelu Lukaku (C) celebrates scoring his team's second goal
Image: Romelu Lukakau (centre) will be crucial for Everton

Now this is a cracking game. Middlesbrough can be cautious but when they come out and play well, as we saw against Manchester United, they're a good side. They're structurally well organised and that's why I thought at the start of the season they have to be serious promotion candidates. The one thing they're lacking is a really prolific striker but they do have midfield runners which make their contributions.

Everton, on the other hand, were all over the place defensively at the weekend and how they let Bournemouth snatch a point on Saturday was absolutely ridiculous. They're an exciting side going forward though and I do have a feeling that they could have a trophy in them. Ross Barkley and Romelu Lukaku are playing so well right now, while Arouna Kone is also dangerous. I'm going for them to edge another thriller here.

Charlie predicts: 2-3 with Kone to score first (140/1 with Sky Bet)

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Manchester City v Hull

Yaya Toure of Manchester City (2L) celebrates with team mates David Silva (L), Wilfred Bony (2R) and Vincent Kompany (R) as he scores their second goal
Image: Nicholas expects Manchester City to makes changes against Hull

I'm interested to see who Manuel Pellegrini goes with. I'd imagine they'd like to give a run out to David Silva but then again they might not want to risk him. Pellegrini will also have to make a call on Sergio Aguero after giving him just over an hour in each of their last three games. I wouldn't be surprised to see Kelechi Iheanacho and Wilfried Bony, who is fit again, playing.

As for Hull, well Steve Bruce might be tempted to change things around as well. With the odds stacked against his side, it's the sort of game where he'll also be reluctant to take any risks, and I think he'll see their next league game at Leeds as more important.

Charlie predicts: 2-0 with Bony to score first (14/1 with Sky Bet)

Stoke v Sheffield Wednesday

Jon Walters celebrates after giving Stoke the lead
Image: Stoke will fancy their chances against Sheffield Wednesday, says Nicholas

Mark Hughes really want to win this game. They've been presented with a great draw and there's no reason for them not to think they can win the Capital One Cup. If they can beat Chelsea, they can beat anyone.

Sheffield Wednesday were obviously excellent against my old club Arsenal and will think they've got nothing to lose, open up and have a go at Stoke, which will suit the hosts. Carlos Carvalhal has some unpredictable talent in his side but I think the hosts will be able to grind out a win.

Charlie predicts: 3-1 with Jonathan Walters to score first (40/1 with Sky Bet)

Southampton v Liverpool (Wednesday, 7.45pm, live on Sky Sports 1HD)

Philippe Coutinho controls the ball against Southampton defense during the Barclays Premier League match between Liverpool and Southampton
Image: Southampton take on Liverpool for a place in the last-four

Well this one really is the pick of the draw. Southampton have been a bit disappointing, yes, but they didn't play badly at Manchester City according to Merse. They missed Graziano Pelle and will have him back against Liverpool. Ronald Koeman will be another one thinking why can't we have a go at winning this? They may not have the depth of some teams but they have a very good side.

Then we have the resurgence under Jurgen Klopp and everyone going crazy because they're up to sixth in the Premier League. It was another grind at home against Swansea and they'll probably prefer being able to play on the counter-attack again here. Koeman will say 'we're at home, we'll play our game' and I think they'll win this one.

Charlie predicts: 3-1 with Pelle to score first (66/1 with Sky Bet)

Charlie's acca

Charlie's acca

Follow Charlie's 16/1 Sky Bet accumulator for Everton, Man City, Stoke and Southampton to win here.

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