Michael Laudrup and the curse of the League Cup

The Swansea manager became the latest man to lose his job within 12 months of winning the cup

The departure of Michael Laudrup should come as little surprise - after all, he did win the League Cup.

Swansea announced last night that the Dane had been given his marching orders, less than 12 months after leading the club to a 5-0 victory at Wembley against Bradford.

His exit makes him the latest to fall to the League Cup jinx that has now claimed five of the last six men to lead their clubs to victory before the next final was played.

The curse began reeking its havoc in 2007, with the first victim being Jose Mourinho, who was sacked by Chelsea seven months after his team beat Arsenal in the final.

Juande Ramos led Tottenham Hotspur to victory against Chelsea in February 2008 and was sacked eight months later with Spurs bottom of the Premier League after they won just three of their subsequent 20 Premier League matches.

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Alex McLeish (Birmingham City 2011), Kenny Dalglish (Liverpool 2012) and now Laudrup departed before the following season's final.

The only manager to buck the trend over the last seven years was Sir Alex Ferguson, who took Manchester United up the Wembley steps in 2009 and 2010 before leaving on his own terms last year.

This year's final will see Manchester City take on Sunderland. While both Manuel Pellegrini and Gus Poyet will be targeting victory, defeat may have a silver lining when it comes to their future.

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