How the Carabao Cup final could affect Arsenal, Chelsea and Tottenham in race for Europe

Fans of Arsenal, Chelsea and Tottenham will be keeping a keen eye on the Carabao Cup final this afternoon.

Manchester City take on Aston Villa in the first final of the season at Wembley, with Pep Guardiola’s side looking to make it three League Cups in a row.

The outcome of today’s final at the home of English football is also likely to have huge ramifications on clubs currently fighting for place in Europe next season.

Below, we look at what a City or Villa win would mean in terms of teams qualifying for Europe next season via their Premier League position.

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To kick off, clubs who finish inside the top six will secure European football next season.

Any side finishing inside the top four will be playing in the Champions League, while the team who finishes fifth will play in the Europa League instead.

Should Manchester City win the Carabao Cup, then the team who finishes the season in sixth would be handed a Europa League spot, while a victory for Villa would see them claim a place in Europe next season.

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Fans of clubs chasing European football should also be keeping a close eye on who wins the FA Cup this season.

Should a team who finishes inside the top five, and if the Carabao Cup is claimed by City, secure the FA Cup then the team who finishes seventh, just like Wolves did last season, would be handed a place in next season’s Europa League – but they would have to start in the qualifying rounds.

This, however, could all change if City are banned from UEFA’s competitions in Europe for the next two seasons.

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City have appealed the decision, but should City’s ban be upheld, and they finish inside the top four, then it is understood that the side finishing fifth place would qualify for the Champions League.

And if City’s appeal…