1988–89 Football League Cup

1988–89 Football League Cup
League Cup, Littlewoods Challenge Cup
Country  England
Teams 92
Champions Nottingham Forest (3rd title)
Runners-up Luton Town

The 1988–89 Football League Cup (known as the Littlewoods Challenge Cup for sponsorship reasons) was the 29th season of the Football League Cup, a knockout competition for England's top 92 football clubs. The competition started on 29 August 1988 and ended with the final on 9 April 1989.

The final was contested by First Division teams Nottingham Forest and holders Luton Town at Wembley Stadium in London.

First round

First Leg

Home Team Score Away Team Date
Bolton Wanderers1–0Chester City30 August 1988
Bournemouth1–0Bristol Rovers30 August 1988
Bristol City1–0Exeter City30 August 1988
Bury2–1Wrexham30 August 1988
Cambridge United1–2Gillingham30 August 1988
Cardiff City0–1Swansea City30 August 1988
Carlisle United1–1Blackpool30 August 1988
Colchester United0–0Northampton Town30 August 1988
Crewe Alexandra1–1Lincoln City30 August 1988
Doncaster Rovers1–1Darlington30 August 1988
Fulham2–2Brentford30 August 1988
Grimsby Town0–1Rotherham United30 August 1988
Hartlepool United2–2Sheffield United30 August 1988
Hereford United0–3Plymouth Argyle29 August 1988
Leyton Orient2–0Aldershot30 August 1988
Notts County5–0Mansfield Town30 August 1988
Port Vale3–2Chesterfield30 August 1988
Rochdale3–3Burnley30 August 1988
Scarborough1–1Halifax Town31 August 1988
Scunthorpe United3–2Huddersfield Town30 August 1988
Shrewsbury Town2–2Walsall30 August 1988
Southend United2–0Brighton & Hove Albion30 August 1988
Stockport County0–1Tranmere Rovers29 August 1988
Torquay United0–1Reading30 August 1988
West Bromwich Albion0–3Peterborough United31 August 1988
Wigan Athletic0–0Preston North End29 August 1988
Wolverhampton Wanderers3–2Birmingham City30 August 1988
York City0–0Sunderland30 August 1988

Second Leg

Home Team Score Away Team Date Agg
Aldershot0–0Leyton Orient6 September 19880–2
Birmingham City1–0[1][2]Wolverhampton Wanderers6 September 19883–3
Blackpool3–0Carlisle United6 September 19884–1
Brentford1–0[1]Fulham6 September 19883–2
Brighton & Hove Albion0–1Southend United7 September 19880–3
Bristol Rovers0–0Bournemouth7 September 19880–1
Burnley2–1Rochdale6 September 19885–4
Chester City3–1Bolton Wanderers7 September 19883–2
Chesterfield1–1Port Vale6 September 19883–4
Darlington2–0Doncaster Rovers6 September 19883–1
Exeter City0–1Bristol City7 September 19880–2
Gillingham3–1Cambridge United6 September 19885–2
Halifax Town2–2[1][3]Scarborough6 September 19883–3
Huddersfield Town2–2[1]Scunthorpe United6 September 19884–5
Lincoln City2–1Crewe Alexandra7 September 19883–2
Mansfield Town1–0Notts County6 September 19881–5
Northampton Town5–0Colchester United6 September 19885–0
Peterborough United0–2West Bromwich Albion7 September 19883–2
Plymouth Argyle3–2Hereford United6 September 19886–2
Preston North End1–0Wigan Athletic6 September 19881–0
Reading3–1Torquay United7 September 19884–1
Rotherham United1–0Grimsby Town6 September 19882–0
Sheffield United2–0[1]Hartlepool United6 September 19884–2
Sunderland4–0York City6 September 19884–0
Swansea City0–2Cardiff City20 September 19881–2
Tranmere Rovers1–1Stockport County5 September 19882–1
Walsall3–0Shrewsbury Town6 September 19885–2
Wrexham2–2[1]Bury6 September 19883–4

Second round

First Leg

Home Team Score Away Team Date
Barnsley0–2Wimbledon27 September 1988
Birmingham City0–2Aston Villa27 September 1988
Blackburn Rovers3–1Brentford27 September 1988
Blackpool2–0Sheffield Wednesday27 September 1988
Bournemouth0–4Coventry City27 September 1988
Darlington2–0Oldham Athletic27 September 1988
Derby County1–0Southend United28 September 1988
Everton3–0Bury27 September 1988
Hull City1–2Arsenal28 September 1988
Leicester City4–1Watford28 September 1988
Leyton Orient1–2Stoke City27 September 1988
Lincoln City1–1Southampton28 September 1988
Liverpool1–0Walsall28 September 1988
Luton Town1–1Burnley27 September 1988
Manchester City1–0Plymouth Argyle28 September 1988
Middlesbrough0–0Tranmere Rovers28 September 1988
Millwall3–0Gillingham27 September 1988
Northampton Town1–1Charlton Athletic27 September 1988
Norwich City2–0Preston North End28 September 1988
Nottingham Forest6–0Chester City28 September 1988
Notts County1–1Tottenham Hotspur27 September 1988
Oxford United2–4Bristol City28 September 1988
Peterborough United1–2Leeds United27 September 1988
Port Vale1–0Ipswich Town26 September 1988
Portsmouth2–2Scarborough27 September 1988
Queens Park Rangers3–0Cardiff City28 September 1988
Reading1–1Bradford City28 September 1988
Rotherham United0–1Manchester United28 September 1988
Scunthorpe United4–1Chelsea27 September 1988
Sheffield United3–0Newcastle United27 September 1988
Sunderland0–3West Ham United27 September 1988
Swindon Town1–2Crystal Palace27 September 1988

Second Leg

Home Team Score Away Team Date Agg
Arsenal3–0Hull City12 October 19885–1
Aston Villa5–0Birmingham City12 October 19887–0
Bradford City2–1[1]Reading12 October 19883–2
Brentford4–3Blackburn Rovers12 October 19885–6
Bristol City2–0Oxford United11 October 19886–2
Burnley0–1Luton Town11 October 19881–2
Bury2–2Everton11 October 19882–5
Cardiff City1–4Queens Park Rangers11 October 19881–7
Charlton Athletic2–1Northampton Town11 October 19883–2
Chelsea2–2Scunthorpe United12 October 19883–6
Chester City0–4Nottingham Forest12 October 19880–10
Coventry City3–1Bournemouth11 October 19887–1
Crystal Palace2–0Swindon Town12 October 19884–1
Gillingham1–3Millwall11 October 19881–6
Ipswich Town3–0Port Vale11 October 19883–1
Leeds United3–1Peterborough United12 October 19885–2
Manchester United5–0Rotherham United12 October 19886–0
Newcastle United2–0Sheffield United12 October 19882–3
Oldham Athletic4–0[1]Darlington11 October 19884–2
Plymouth Argyle3–6Manchester City12 October 19883–7
Preston North End0–3Norwich City11 October 19880–5
Scarborough3–1Portsmouth12 October 19885–3
Sheffield Wednesday3–1[1][4]Blackpool12 October 19883–3
Southampton3–1Lincoln City11 October 19884–2
Southend United1–2Derby County11 October 19881–3
Stoke City1–2[1][5]Leyton Orient11 October 19883–3
Tottenham Hotspur2–1Notts County11 October 19883–2
Tranmere Rovers1–0Middlesbrough11 October 19881–0
Walsall1–3Liverpool12 October 19881–4
Watford2–2Leicester City11 October 19883–6
West Ham United2–1Sunderland12 October 19885–1
Wimbledon0–1Barnsley12 October 19882–1

Third round


Home Team Score Away Team Date
Aston Villa3–1Millwall2 November 1988
Bradford City1–1Scunthorpe United2 November 1988
Bristol City4–1Crystal Palace1 November 1988
Everton1–1Oldham Athletic8 November 1988
Ipswich Town2–0Leyton Orient1 November 1988
Leeds United0–2Luton Town2 November 1988
Leicester City2–0Norwich City2 November 1988
Liverpool1–1Arsenal2 November 1988
Manchester City4–2Sheffield United2 November 1988
Nottingham Forest3–2Coventry City2 November 1988
Queens Park Rangers2–1Charlton Athletic2 November 1988
Scarborough2–2Southampton2 November 1988
Tottenham Hotspur0–0Blackburn Rovers1 November 1988
Tranmere Rovers1–0Blackpool1 November 1988
West Ham United5–0Derby County1 November 1988
Wimbledon2–1Manchester United2 November 1988


Home Team Score Away Team Date
Arsenal0–0[1]Liverpool9 November 1988
Blackburn Rovers1–2[1]Tottenham Hotspur9 November 1988
Oldham Athletic0–2Everton29 November 1988
Scunthorpe United0–1Bradford City22 November 1988
Southampton1–0Scarborough22 November 1988

2nd Replay

Home Team Score Away Team Date
Liverpool2–1Arsenal23 November 1988

Fourth round


Home Team Score Away Team Date
Aston Villa6–2Ipswich Town30 November 1988
Bradford City3–1Everton14 December 1988
Bristol City1–0Tranmere Rovers29 November 1988
Leicester City0–0Nottingham Forest30 November 1988
Luton Town3–1Manchester City29 November 1988
Queens Park Rangers0–0Wimbledon30 November 1988
Southampton2–1Tottenham Hotspur29 November 1988
West Ham United4–1Liverpool30 November 1988


Home Team Score Away Team Date
Nottingham Forest2–1Leicester City14 December 1988
Wimbledon0–1Queens Park Rangers14 December 1988

Fifth Round


Home Team Score Away Team Date
Bradford City0–1Bristol City18 January 1989
Luton Town1–1Southampton18 January 1989
Nottingham Forest5–2Queens Park Rangers18 January 1989
West Ham United2–1Aston Villa18 January 1989


Home Team Score Away Team Date
Southampton1–2[1]Luton Town25 January 1989


Nottingham Forest, flying high in the First Division, had a narrow victory over Third Division underdogs Bristol City in the semi-finals, while holders Luton Town enjoyed a comfortable triumph over West Ham United in both legs.

First Leg

Home Team Score Away Team Date
Nottingham Forest1–1Bristol City15 February 1989
West Ham United0–3Luton Town12 February 1989

Second Leg

Home Team Score Away Team Date Agg
Bristol City0–1[1]Nottingham Forest26 February 19891–2
Luton Town2–0West Ham United1 March 19895–0


Nottingham Forest 3–1 Luton Town
Attendance: 76,130




  1. 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 After Extra Time
  2. Birmingham City won on the Away Goals Rule
  3. Scarborough won on the Away Goals Rule
  4. Blackpool won on the Away Goals Rule
  5. Leyton Orient won 3–2 on penalties

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