Carling Cup Round 3
Wednesday 22 September 2010, 20.00 KO
City: Given, Vidal (Zabaleta 53), Boyata, Mee, Cunningham, Vieira (c), Ibrahim (Milner 70), A Johnson, Jo, Santa Cruz (Silva 80), Guidetti
Unused: Taylor, Kompany, Kay, Veseli
Goals: Jo (20)
Booked: Vidal, Vieira
Referee: Neil Swarbrick
Man of the Match: Shay Given
With tough fixtures against Chelsea and Juventus coming up, it showed Roberto Mancini’s intentions towards the League Cup when he made 11 changed to the side that started on Sunday at the DW Stadium. Shay Given got his chance to impress, while debuts were handed to Javan Vidal and Ben Mee.
And it was the home side that had the early pressure. With three minutes on the clock, Reid shot well over the bar, before Tchoyi took on and beat Ben Mee, curling an effort just wide of the post.
City had their first chance soon after and should have taken the lead. Roque Santa Cruz fed Jo, who pulled the ball across goal low and hard. On the stretch Guidetti did his best to reach it, but he was inches away from slotting it into the net.
Given was then alert to produce a smart save from Dorrans, pushing the ball away. Bednar, who scored the goal that beat City on their last visit to the Hawthorns, was just inches away from the rebound.
Then, against the run of play, the visitors took the lead. A lovely ball from Vieira found Guidetta in the box and the ball fell to Jo, who rifled the ball into the back of the net with his left foot.
Vieira was then needed three times in quick succession to make superb blocks to stop the home side from equalizing immediately after the restart, before Given got down well to stop from Bednar as West Brom began to give City both barrels.
Just before half time, a goalmouth scramble in the City box could have got the hosts level, but Given was alert to push a header from Barnes onto the post and the visitors just about got the ball clear.
And, as the half entered stoppage time, Vieira gave the ball away and Boyata and Given had to combine to stop Bednar from finding the equalizer, as City hung on until the break.
The second half, though, began where the first ended – with West Brom pressure. Save for a long range free kick by Adam Johnson clipping the wall and a volley from Guidette, City struggled to get out of their own half.
Given produced another good save from a one-on-one with Barnes, as the Baggies’ man tried to life the ball over him, before the home side pulled themselves level. Zuiverloon drilled it low and hard across Given from the right corner of the box and, as good as the City keeper had been, he couldn’t keep it out.
And, two minutes later, it got worse for City. Virtually straight from the kick off, Cox nipped in ahead of Given to slot the ball into the net, leaving City with their backs against the wall and a mountain to climb.
With 15 minutes to go, Santa Cruz could have been in, but he was well short of getting onto the end of the through ball, as City struggled to create any meaningful chances and West Brom continued to press.
Four minutes from time, Guidetti wanted a penalty, but it was rightly turned down by the officials, before West Brom could have won the game through Cox, but he couldn’t reach Fortune’s cross.
City had a last throw of the dice in sending Given up for a last minute corner, but it came to nothing and the visitors crashed out of the League Cup in the third round. For a chance to visit Wembley, the blues will have to wait for the FA Cup in January.