United draw Northampton in the third round of the EFL Cup

Manchester United will take on Northampton Town in the third round of the EFL Cup

United draw Northampton in the third round of the EFL Cup
Above: Manchester United celebrating one of their two goals in their 2-0 win over Southampton | Photo: Getty Images

Jose Mourinho's Manchester United, will enter the third round of the English Football League Cup, looking to avoid a slip up as they have been drawn with lower league minnows, Northampton Town.

Avoiding a giant killing

The newly-rebranded League Cup will be Mourinho's first opportunity at silverware since taking over from Louis van Gaal, as the Red Devils look to improve on their last 16 exit from last season, after being defeated on penalties by Middlesbrough.

However they could face a tough test when they travel to the Sixfields Stadium in mid-September, with the Cobblers having already claimed a Premier League scalp in this year's competition.

Many will have expected Tony Pulis' West Brom side to steamroll their League One opponents. However the home side weren't following the script with Zander Diamond giving Northampton the lead.

Goals in quick succession from James McClean and Gareth McAuley looked to have sealed the tie for the Baggies. But a effort from Alex Revell took it to extra-time and it was Kenji Gorre's penalty setting up the tie with the Red Devils.

Above: Marcus Rashford with manager Jose Mourinho after Manchester United's 5-2 friendly win over Galatasaray | Photo: Getty Images
Above: Marcus Rashford with manager Jose Mourinho after Manchester United's 5-2 friendly win over Galatasaray | Photo: Getty Images

Play or be axed

The cup competitions will allow Mourinho to play some of the young talents in his squad, with one of them fully expected to be Marcus Rashford.

The young striker has yet to be given the opportunities to kick on from his excellent second half to last season, with Mourinho reportedly confirming the youngster is part of his plans.

One man who is yet confirm that is England manager Sam Allardyce, who said it will be difficult to pick him if he isn't playing for United.

He said: "The difficulty is Rashford’s not playing. It makes it harder for me to select him, as exciting as he was last year, bursting onto the scene."

The former Sunderland man pondered the idea:"I could say ‘go and play for the Under 21s’ get used to international football there and that will help you eventually break into the Manchester United team and eventually the England team," and was adamant "I’ve got all those scenarios to consider."

The third round ties of the EFL Cup are expected to be played across Tuesday, September 20 and Wednesday, September 21 with kick-off expected for 7:45pm BST.