EFL CUP REVIEW
Stanley denied by Payet, Norwich shock Everton and Preston delight
ACCRINGTON Stanley manager John Coleman promised in last Sunday’s FLP that his side would rise to the occasion against West Ham in the EFL Cup – and he wasn’t wrong.
He also suggested his League Two side would surprise the Hammers with how they approached the game, getting the ball down and playing it.
So how galling it must have been after all their hard work – and no little skill – to see West Ham’s French star Dimitri Payet, who had come off the substitutes’ bench at half-time, net the only goal of the game in the sixth minute of stoppage time with a trademark free-kick.
“We came here to win and we matched them for most of the game,” said Coleman. “Unfortunately we've gone to sleep in the 96th minute and you give a player of Payet's quality a free-kick on the edge of the box and it's tantamount to a penalty.”
But if Stanley were left with that ‘what if’ feeling, then there were other EFL clubs feeling a whole lot happier,
none more so that Norwich and Preston, who both took Premier scalps. Not many people would have Fancied the Canaries to win at Everton, but the Championship side had other ideas and came away with an Impressive 2-0 victory. Former Everton man Gary Naismith gave Norwich the lead to stun the Goodison Park faithful before John Murphy scored a magnificent second to seal the victory and earn a trip to Leeds – who beat Blackburn 1-0 at Elland Road with an 85tth minute winner from substitute Chris Wood- in the fourth round. Preston went into their match at Bournemouth on the back end of a 5-0 drubbing at Brentford, but they bounced back in style. Danish striker Simon Makienok, 25, proved the hero of the hour with a hattrick as North End won 3-2 after extra-time. Preston will be away to Newcastle in an all-Championship tie in round four. The Magpies turned the tables on Wolves to reach the last 16. On the Saturday, Walter Zenga’s men shocked the Toon with a 2-0 win at St James’ Park, but this time it was 2-0 to the home side with goals from Matt Ritchie and Yoan Gouffran. Other Championship clubs through to the next round are Bristol City and Reading.
The Robins won 2-1 at Fulham after coming from behind. Lucas Piazon gave the Whites an early lead, but Aaron Wilbraham levelled things up just before the break.
Fulham’s Cauley Woodrow then saw his penalty saved by City keeper Ivan Lucic and they paid the full price when red-hot striker Tammy Abraham, who had come off the bench, netted a last-gasp winner. City will be at home to Premier League outfit Hull City in the last 16.
Reading earned an impressive 2-1 victory at Brighton. Stephen Quinn gave the Royals the lead but they then had Tyler Blackett sent off shortly before the interval.
John Swift doubled the lead for the ten men early in the second half before Tomer Hemed pulled one back with five minutes.
Reading’s reward is a good one – a trip to Arsene Wenger’s Arsenal. The Gunners eased through with a 4-0 win at Nottingham Forest.
Forest’s rivals Derby County were also put to the sword, going down 3-0 at home against Liverpoool, while QPR lost 2-1 at home against Sunderland despite Sandro’s superb strike.
Alex Revell scored from the penalty spot for Northampton Town in their glamour tie against Manchester United, but Jose Mourinho’s Red Devils ultimately triumphed 3-1 on a rare off-night for Cobblers keeper Adam Smith.
Justin Edinburgh’s return to White Hart Lane didn’t prove a happy one as his Gillingham side were beaten 5-0 by Tottenham.
GUTTED: Accrington Stanley’s Matty Pearson at the final whistle
APPLAUSE: Accrington boss John Coleman BIG MOMENT: Alex Revell nets for Northampton, left. CRACKER: Norwich’s Josh Murphy scores, far right. JOY: Preston’s Simon Makienok celebrates his hat-trick OH NO! Dimitri Payet’s lastgasp free-kick is on the way into the net for the winner