Oxford 1-1 Sunderland (4-2 pens): Karl Robinson’s men book their place in the quarter-finals of the Carabao Cup after shootout victory over Black Cats
- Oxford went ahead in the first half after Rob Hall swept home from a pull-back
- Sunderland pulled level with 10 minutes left as Marc McNulty turned home
- Oxford won 4-2 on penalties to seal their place in the quarter-finals of the cup
- Karl Robinson’s men have reached the quarters for the first time since 1988
Oxford United reached their first League Cup quarter-final since 1988 thanks to misses in the penalty shoot-out by Sunderland pair Will Grigg and Marc McNulty.
An all-League One tie proved as close as the league positions suggested with only three points separating the clubs.
Oxford United players are delighted as their shootout win put them in the quarter-finals
Oxford manager Karl Robinson has led his side to the last four for the first time since 1988
Fosu-henry and Rob Dickie embrace after their 4-2 shootout win over Sunderland is confirmed
Oxford: Eastwood, Long, Dickie, Moore, Ruffels, Henry, Gorrin, Baptiste (Mousinho 90+3), Hall (Forde 81), Taylor (Mackie 81), Fosu-Henry
Goals: Hall 25
Subs not used: Stevens, Sykes, Agyei, Jones
Sunderland: McLaughlin, Lynch (Grigg 55), Willis, Flanagan, McLaughlin, Dobson, Leadbitter, Power, Hume (O’Nien 68), McGeady, McNulty
Goals: McNulty 78
Subs not used: McGeouch, Mbunga-Kimpioka, Taylor, Connelly, Patterson
Ref: Steve Martin
Oxford, who beat West Ham 4-0 in the previous round, went ahead after 25 minutes when Rob Hall slammed home Tariqe Fosu’s cutback from 12 yards.
However the visitors went close themselves through Marc McNulty and Max Power and deserved their equaliser after 78 minutes when Oxford failed to clear a corner and McNulty swivelled to score.
Both sides have League Cup pedigree – Oxford won the trophy in 1986 and Sunderland’s new boss Phil Parkinson took League Two Bradford to the final – and fancied their chances in the penalty shoot-out.
But whereas Oxford converted all of theirs, sub Grigg – of ‘on fire’ fame – blasted over and the Simon Eastwood saved from McNulty.
Rob Hall celebrates with James Henry and Josh Ruffels after he nets the first goal of the game
Sunderland’s Max Power can hardly believe his luck after firing wide with the goal gaping
Delighted Oxford boss Karl Robinson said: ‘What a wonderful night. I told the players it was their chance to write themselves in the club’s history books.
‘I’m like a fan, I can’t wait to see who we get in the quarter finals – but I’d prefer Colchester!’
Black Cats manager Phil Parkinson thought his side deserved a late penalty for a foul on Luke O’Nien.
He raged: ‘The officials have to take a long hard look at themselves. Luke was about to pull the trigger and there was contact. I am gobsmacked, I can’t see any reason why it wasn’t a penalty.’
Marc McNulty finishes from close range after Grant Leadbitter had swung in a corner
Grant Leadbitter celebrates as his corner provides the assist for McNulty’s late equaliser
On-loan Sunderland striker Will Grigg missed his spot kick in the penalty shootout defeat