EFL Cup: Chelsea come from behind at Leicester , Preston and Norwich beat Premier League opposition while Liverpool book fourth round place

21 Sep

talkSPORT’s round-up from Tuesday’s cup action…


Leicester City 2-4 Chelsea (AET)

Out-of-favour midfielder Cesc Fabregas scored two in as many minutes in extra-time to complete Chelsea’s comeback from 2-0 down to beat ten-man Leicester City 4-2.

Shinji Okazaki had not scored for the Foxes since March but once he opened his account for the season they came like London buses, the Japanese forward netting a first-half double against Antonio Conte’s men.

The first came after the Foxes broke at pace, with sloppy defending allowing the ball to fall to Okazaki at the near post, who headed home from an acute angle, despite Cesar Azpilicueta’s attempted clearance. The 30-year-old’s second was from a difficult angle and once again cleared by Azpilicueta once the ball had beaten Asmir Begovic and crossed the line.

Gary Cahill pulled one back with a header before half-time – the ball crossed the line before an eventual clearance hit David Luiz and ricocheted in, but the former Bolton defender was already awarded the goal.

Azpilicueta then drew Chelsea level with a sumptuous volley from 19 yards as he met a clearance on the edge of the box and it looked like the ascendancy would then be with Chelsea.

Substitute Diego Costa was on the field for just three minutes before he was set through on goal, but he did not look up and shot just past the post.

The game became increasingly open with Leicester’s stand-in shot-stopper Ron Robert Zieler making a stunning double save to deny Costa. 

At the other end, Ahmed Musa had a chance but the best one fell for substitute Andy King, who headed over from two yards.

Marcin Wasilewski was shown a second booking, after catching Costa with a flailing arm, before the match went to extra-time where Fabregas netted in quick succession. The Spanish playmaker, who has been out of favour in the league under Conte, put the visitors ahead after just two minutes after a pacey move. The former Arsenal and Barcelona midfielder made it four when the ball fell to him in a central position in the box, where he made no mistake with a drilled effort. 

Derby County 0-3 Liverpool

Last year’s finalists Liverpool followed up their second round 5-0 thrashing of Burton with a comfortable 3-0 win at Derby.

Nigel Pearson’s Rams conceded after 24 minutes when Ragnar Klavan pounced on a loose ball to fire home from eight yards.

Roberto Firmino, returning from injury, combined brilliantly with Philippe Coutinho five minutes into the second half, with the latter sliding home past young County stopper Jonathan Mitchell.

Divock Origi netted his second of the competitino four minutes later with a brilliant finish high into the net from an acute angle.

Everton 0-2 Norwich City

One of the upsets of the night came from Goodison Park as Ronald Koeman lost his first game as Everton manager in a 2-0 defeat to Norwich City.

The Championship outfit took the lead in the first half through former Toffee Steven Naismith and Josh Murphy added another in the second period at Goodison Park to seal the victory for Alex Neil’s Canaries.

Nottingham Forest 0-4 Arsenal

Arsenal avoided a potential banana skin tie when they were comfortable 4-0 winners at Nottingham Forest.

The match saw ex-Gunner Nicklas Bendtner come up against his former employers but it was about the new Arsenal stars on the night.

Granit Xhaka followed up his weekend thunderbolt at Hull with another 30-yard strike – which should have been dealt with better by Forest keeper Vladimir Stojkovic.

Lucas Perez – a signing at the end of August from Deportivo La Coruna – added a second, from the spot, shortly before the hour. The 28-year-old Spaniard capitalised on sloppy defending by the hosts to double his tally in a Gunners shirt.

Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain, who scored on the opening day of the season against Liverpool, made it four in added time to complete a brilliant passing move by the north Londoners.

AFC Bournemouth 2-3 Preston North End

On-loan striker Simon Makienok netted a hat-trick for Simon Grayson’s Preston North End to give them a shock 3-2 victory at Bournemouth.

The 25-year-old put the visitors ahead after ten minutes before Lewis Grabban drew Eddie Howe’s side level from the spot in the second half. 

It looked like Dan Gosling had fired the Cherries into the fourth round but Makienok scored on 85 minutes to take the match to extra-time.

The Danish footballer, on loan from Palermo, then completed his treble and Championship strugglers North End held on to book their place in the fourth round.

Newcastle United 2-0 Wolverhampton Wanderers

Newcastle bounced back from their league defeat to Wolves at the weekend by getting revenge on Walter Zenga’s Wanderers with a 2-0 win at St James’ Park.

Matt Ritchie put the Magpies ahead with a stunning volley on 29 minutes before Frenchman Yann Gouffran doubled their lead two minutes later.

Brighton and Hove Albion 1-2 Reading

In an all-Championship clash at the Amex, Jaap Staam’s ten-man Reading were 2-1 winners against Brighton.

Stephen Quinn opened the scoring after 32 minutes before the Royals’ Tyler Blackett, a summer signing from Manchester United, saw red for a lunge on former Reading midfielder Oliver Norwood.

Ex-Chelsea youngster John Swift doubled the visitors’ lead nine minutes into the second half. Tomer Hemed pulled one back for Brighton with five minutes to go but it was too little, too late.

Leeds United 1-0 Blackburn Rovers

Chris Wood netted a late winner to book Leeds’ place in the fourth round after defeating Blackburn 1-0 in front of a sparse Elland Road crowd.

In a repeat of last week’s Championship meeting, the much-changed sides looked to be heading for extra-time before the New Zealand striker made it six for the season – two of which came against Rovers.

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