Pep Guardiola’s Manchester City were crowned as League Cup winners for the third successive season this weekend, beating Aston Villa 2-1 at Wembley to continue their domestic dominance of recent years.
The achievement also saw Guardiola join an exclusive group of managers to have won the competition on at least three occasions, and we’ve decided to look back at the most successful coaches in League Cup history.
Here are the six managers to have at least three League Cup winners’ medals:
The most recent inclusion into this list courtesy of Sunday’s win over Aston Villa, Guardiola becoming just the sixth manager in history to win the League Cup on three or more occasions.
The Spaniard’s Manchester City side have been all-conquering on the domestic scene in recent seasons, winning eight of the past nine domestic trophies including three consecutive League Cups.
Guardiola would lift the trophy for the first time after beating Arsenal 3-0 at Wembley in 2018, before emerging victorious from a penalty shoot-out against Chelsea last season as City completed English football’s first ever domestic treble.
This season’s third in succession continues the Etihad club’s fine record in the competition in recent years, City having won the trophy five times in the past seven seasons, with only Liverpool having now registered more than their seven League Cup successes.
George Graham – 3
Graham would spend almost a decade as Arsenal manager and win a wealth of silverware whilst in charge of the Gunners, winning two league titles and the European Cup Winners’ Cup amongst an extensive collection of major trophies.
Graham’s haul would include two League Cup successes, the second as part of a domestic cup double alongside the FA Cup in 1993 – Arsenal becoming the first side in English football history to achieve the feat.
The Scot would later controversially cross the north London divide to take charge of Tottenham via a spell at Leeds, winning the third League Cup of his career as Spurs defeated Leicester in the 1999 final at Wembley.
Bob Paisley – 3
One of the great managers in English football history, Paisley would oversee a dominant era at Liverpool in which the club would six league league titles and three European Cups – becoming one of just three managers to have lifted Europe’s biggest prize on three occasions.
Paisley would win 20 honours during a nine-year spell at Anfield, including lifting the League Cup three times consecutively between 1981 and 1983, with the Reds adding a fourth in succession under the guidance of Joe Fagan the following season.
Sir Alex Ferguson – 4
The most successful manager in the history of English football unsurprisingly features on this list, though for all of Manchester United‘s dominance under the great Scot it would not be until his latter years at Old Trafford that he would join this exclusive group.
Ferguson would win the League Cup just a solitary time during his first 19 years in charge of the Red Devils, Brian McClair scoring the only goal of the game as Nottingham Forest were beaten at Wembley in 1992.
It would be another 14 years until the League Cup would next head to Manchester, however, before a run of three trophies in five seasons. Ferguson’s side would thrash Wigan 4-0 in the 2006 final in Cardiff, before adding back-to-back trophies in 2009 and 2010 with wins over Tottenham and Aston Villa respectively.
Jose Mourinho – 4
Mourinho would memorably laud himself as the ‘Special One’ upon his arrival in English football 16 years ago, though the serial winner would soon deliver silverware by landing the League Cup in his debut season as Chelsea manager.
That victory over Liverpool in the 2005 final would be the first time of four occasions the Portuguese has lifted the League Cup, his second following two seasons later as Chelsea beat London rivals Arsenal in Cardiff.
Mourinho would add a third League Cup during his second spell at Stamford Bridge in 2015, before a record-equalling fourth during his time as Manchester United manager – Zlatan Ibrahimovic scoring twice in a 3-2 victory over Southampton.
Brian Clough – 4
The charismatic Clough holds the joint-record for most League Cup trophies alongside Ferguson and Mourinho, having guided Nottingham Forest to the most successful period of their history during the seventies and eighties.
Clough’s back-to-back European Cups with Forest is often lauded, though the North East-native would also guide the club to successive League Cup victories on two occasions – a decade apart.
Forest would lift the League Cup under his stewardship in 1978 and 1979, before repeating the feat in 1988 and 1989, an achievement which saw Clough become the first manager to win the competition on four occasions.