Sheffield United claimed a major scalp in the Capital One Cup as Michael Doyle’s penalty in a shoot-out sealed the win for the Blades against Premier League West Ham.
Diafra Sakho’s first goal for the Hammers was cancelled out early in the second half by a Winston Reid own goal and after the teams couldn’t be separated in extra time, Doyle hit the winning spot kick to send the travelling United fans into raptures.
Marc McNulty, Ryan Flynn and Bob Harris returned to Sheffield United’s starting eleven for tonight’s match.
James Wallace, who has yet to make a senior appearance since joining from Tranmere Rovers earlier this summer, was named on the visitors bench after passing a fitness test this morning.
The Hammers looked the more composed in the opening few minutes, but as the half wore on United grew into the encounter and had the first half chance on goal, after 11 minutes when a short free kick eventually found its way into the box, where Ben Davies headed over.
However, the home side upped the tempo shortly after that and after Ricardo Vaz Te had headed over the bar, Ravel Morrison tried his luck from 25 yards, following some neat build up play, but his effort went well over.
Sheffield United won a corner after 19 minutes and Craig Alcock’s volley at the near post went wide from Davies’ ball in.
At the other end Mark Howard needed two chances to save a shot from Enner Valencia but United still looked dangerous on the break with Davies at the heart of the action when the visitors were pressing.
On 24 minutes Davies’ cross towards Ryan Flynn caused problems and Guy Demel had to turn around for a corner.
From there Diafra Sakho headed away powerfully.
Diego Poyet shot over from 25 yards then on the half hour Howard was forced into a save when Mohamed Diame fed Valencia, but couldn;t beat the keeper who dived low to his left.
On 35 minutes Howard was again in action as this time Morrison was denied from a free kick which bent around the wall, but not past Howard who parried away.
From the corner Reece Burke struck well on the volley but Howard, again, was equal to it.
United were finally broken with five minutes of the half remaining when a cross from the right by Reece Burke was met by a flicked header from Sakho which found the bottom corner.
In first half injury time Damel’s cross was just too far ahead of Valencia for the Ecuador striker to convert.
The second half took a little while to gather steam with a poorly struck shot from United’s Mark McNulty the only effort of note.
That was, however, until the 57th minute when a cross from the left was flicked on by McNulty and the ball ricocheted off Reid and beyond Jussi Jaaskelainen.
West Ham pushed forward in search of another goal, with Stewart Downing coming off the bench and becoming the focal point of the home side’s attack.
United, were dealt a blow, though, on 72 minutes, when after a challenge with Poyet, Bob Harris had to receive treatment for an injury and was eventually forced off.
Alcock headed over from a corner on 79 minutes, then Howard had to be alert to tip over an effort from Downing on 84 minutes.
That was as close as either side came though and the game went into extra time.
There was little to talk about for much of the first period of extra time as United defended well and West Ham were forced into taking pot-shots from distance.
James Wallace came off the bench, replacing Jose Baxter for his first appearance, while Campbell-Ryce was offering an outlet following his call up from the bench.
Though it was Jay McEveley who had the best chance for the Blades as his effort was spilled by Jaaskelainen but the danger was eventually cleared.
The second period of extra time was much like the first with United defending well and blocking everything that West Ham threw at them and it would take penalties to separate the sides.
Davies, Collins, McNulty and McEveley all scored for United and after Valencia missed for West Ham, Doyle fired home the winning spot kick to send the Blades into the third round.
West Ham: Jaaskelainen, Reid, Vaz Te, Morrison, Sakho, Demel, Diame, Poyet, Valencia, Burke, Potts. Not used: Spiegel, Zarate, Downing, Noble, Oxford, Lee, Page.
Sheffield United: Howard, Alcock, Harris, Basham, Flynn, Doyle, Baxter, McNulty, Collins, Davies, McGahey. Not used: Turner, Wallace, Murphy, McEveley, Campbell-Ryce, Higdon, Reed.
Referee: James Linington (Newport)