The Carabao Cup, which should really be rebranded as the Pep Guardiola Cup, has been a joyful competition for Manchester City over recent years.

The last time City were knocked out of the competition was at the hands of neighbours Manchester United on October 26, 2016, with Juan Mata scoring the only goal.

It’s safe to say that the blue side of Manchester has enjoyed a much better period since.

It’s 1826 days since Pep suffered the bitter taste of defeat in the sweet, sweet Carabao and he will look to continue going from strength to strength against an in-form West Ham at London Stadium on Wednesday.

It could even be argued that the Hammers, backed by a vociferous east London crowd, will be City’s most difficult opponent since their long winning streak began at West Brom in 2017.

West Ham are an incredibly well-drilled side and play some fearless football. A win against David Moyes’ team would be more than just another routine triumph.

Cup competitions have provided West Ham with some of their finest moments this season. In addition to the victory at Old Trafford in the previous round, they have also won every single Europa League group stage match without conceding a goal.

One of the only remaining bragging rights United can still claim to have over City - a tenuous one at that - is the fact they were the last team to defeat Guardiola in the competition.

If City manage to beat West Ham they will march merrily on but if Moyes' men prevail, United will no longer be Pep's sole Carabao slayers.

Pep Guardiola and his backroom staff enjoy winning the Carabao Cup yet again

When the Reds won that game five years and a day ago, many believed the two teams were neck-and-neck and would challenge one another for years to come. Those were the days of Guardiola v Mourinho pt2, remember.

One team did go on to challenge every year, yet the other finds itself grappling with the future of a manager who increasingly appears out of his depth.

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It is something of a shame from a City perspective that United failed to beat West Ham to progress to this stage, as it would have been Guardiola’s turn to indlict more damage on Ole Gunnar Solskjaer's already-broken side.

If it’s true Liverpool took their foot off the gas against United in their 5-0 win, they’ll have another thing in store when Pep’s side come to town.

Suppose the Blues will have to patiently wait until November 6 to have their fun.