Carling Cup: Big two remain on course for final

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The Independent Online

Favourites Manchester United and Tottenham were kept apart in the draw for the Carling Cup semi-finals today.

Holders Spurs will play Coca-Cola Championship side Burnley, who have knocked out Chelsea and Arsenal in the last two rounds, in the two-legged last-four clash, with the first match at White Hart Lane.

The other tie sees United, who last won the trophy in 2006, travel to another Championship side, Derby, for the first leg.

The matches will be played in the weeks beginning January 5 and 19.

Derby's 1-0 victory over Stoke in the quarter-finals on Tuesday saw them reach the semi-finals of a major cup competition for the first time since 1976, when they were beaten by Manchester United in the FA Cup.

The draw will not fill County boss Paul Jewell with confidence however, as a manager he has lost every match against United with Bradford, Wigan and Derby, including the 2006 League Cup final, when Sir Alex Ferguson's side beat Wigan 4-0.

Spurs will not take Burnley lightly following their exploits in the competition so far, while Harry Redknapp's side found life tough against Watford on Wednesday, coming from behind to triumph 2-1.

The match is a repeat of a League Cup quarter-final tie in 1983, when Burnley won 4-1 in London. Owen Coyle's side are enjoying a superb season and currently sit fourth in the Championship table.

Tottenham will be looking to retain the trophy after picking up their first major honour for nine years with a 2-1 victory over Chelsea at Wembley in February.

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