Carabao Cup rules: extra time, penalties and substitutions explained for English cup competition round one

The first round of the EFL Cup gets underway this week as teams from the Championship, League One and League two kick the 2022/23 competition off.

The Carabao Cup returns tonight (Tuesday, August 9) with first round ties across the Northern and Southern sections taking place.

Teams from the EFL Championship, League One and League Two get the action underway with the 13 Premier League teams who are not competing in European football this season set to join in round two.

The early fixtures card is highlighted with two stand out ties, both of which will be shown live on Sky Sports, as Bradford City face Hull City on Tuesday and Sheffield Wednesday welcome Sunderland on Wednesday.

For those who will be sitting down to watch the live action, here is all the information you need to know about the competitions rules including how many substitutes are allowed and whether or not the ties will go to extra time and penalties:

How many substitutions are allowed in the Carabao Cup?


Teams are allowed to name nine substitutes on their bench for a Carabao Cup match in the 2022/23 competition and are permitted to use five of them.

However, teams only have three opportunities during the match to use substitutes.

Rule 8.1 of the competition’s guidelines says: “In all Competition Matches, each Club is permitted to name up to nine substitutes on the Team Sheet, of whom not more than five may take part in the Competition Match. Each Club is only permitted a maximum of three opportunities to make substitutions during the Competition Match. Clubs may make substitutions at half time and any substitutions made will not count towards the maximum of three opportunities. A Club may make more than one substitution at each of its three opportunities.”

What are concussion substitutions?

For the first time in 2022/23, the competition will allow sides to make “concussion substitutions.

Rule 8.3 of the competition’s guidelines says: “Each Club shall also be permitted to utilise up to two ‘concussion substitutes’ and/or two ‘additional substitutes’ (as appropriate) from those substitutes listed on the Team Sheet, strictly in accordance with the provisions of the International Football Association Board’s ‘Additional permanent concussion substitutes – Protocol B (‘IFAB Protocol’)’ and any associated guidance issued by the League. Use of either a ‘concussion substitute’ or an ‘additional substitute’ in accordance with this Rule 8.3 shall not count towards the five substitutions permitted to take part in the Competition Match.”


Will there be extra time and penalties in Carabao Cup first round ties?

First round ties in the 2022/23 Carabao Cup that finish level will not go to extra time or a replay and, instead, will go straight to penalty kicks.

This is the case from round one through to round five with only the semi-final and final having the standard 30 minute extra time period if required.

Rule 12.4 of the competition’s guidelines says: “In the event of the scores being level at the end of ninety minutes’ play in rounds one, two, three, four and five no extra time shall be played, and the winners shall be determined by the taking of kicks from the penalty mark in accordance with procedures as approved by IFAB.”

The full competition rules for the 2022/23 Carabao Cup can be found at the competition’s official website.