• Capital One Cup round-up

Arsenal embarrassed by Bradford in Capital One Cup

ESPN staff
December 11, 2012
Garry Thompson was the man on target for Bradford © PA Photos

Arsenal crashed out of the Capital One Cup to League Two side Bradford City on penalties, while Aston Villa came from behind to beat Norwich.

The Gunners had high hopes of ending their long trophy drought in the competition and Arsene Wenger signalled his intent by fielding a strong side. A late header from Thomas Vermaelen cancelled out an early volley from Garry Thompson to force extra-time, but the Premier League side failed to take their lifeline and fell in a penalty shootout.

Arsenal were dominant early, with Vermaelen and Lukas Podolski putting decent headed chances over the bar.

Bradford, though, kept playing their football and a neat set-piece move saw the ball find Thompson at the far post and he volleyed home.

Francis Coquelin hit a post for Arsenal, Santi Cazorla went close and Gervinho somehow missed from three yards, but a minute from the break Nahki Wells had the chance to double Bradford's lead but dragged his effort a foot wide.

Arsenal took time to find their stride in the second half, but Jack Wilshre drove them forward in the final 20 minutes and Vermaelen headed home late on to level.

Matt Duke pulled off two fine saves to thwart Cazorla in injury-time and the same player thundered a shot against the bar in extra-time.

Arsenal fell behind early on in the shootout, with Cazorla and Marouane Chamakh missing. Wojciech Szczesny saved twice to give Arsenal hope, but Vermaelen sent the final penalty against the post and propelled Bradford into the semi-finals.

Andreas Weimann struck twice as Aston Villa came from behind to book a place in the semi-finals of the Capital One Cup with a 4-1 win at Norwich as manager Paul Lambert enjoyed a triumphant return to his old club.

Lambert received a mixed welcome as he walked out at Carrow Road, with a few jeers heard among general applause for the man who masterminded the Norfolk club's meteoric rise up to the top flight from the depths of npower League One.

However, the former Canaries boss, who is in dispute with his old employers after an acrimonious departure during the summer, enjoyed the last laugh as substitute Weimann hit a second-half brace to turn the tie around after Brent Holman had cancelled out Steve Morison's opener.

Christian Benteke cracked in a fourth during stoppage time to move Villa a step closer to Wembley.

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