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Capital One Cup Review: Liverpool Struggle While Gunners Win Derby

capital-one-cupLiverpool survived an almighty scare in the English League Cup while Sheffield Wednesday heaped more misery on Newcastle boss Steve McClaren as he saw his side lose 1-0 at home.

With rumors of a split amongst Liverpool’s directors on whether to fire Brendan Rodgers or not, the under-fire manager saw his side booed by the kop as they struggled to beat Carlise on penalties after a 1-1 draw.

Adam Lallana and Philippe Coutinho both saw penalties saved by Mark Gillespie, but reserve goalkeeper Adam Bogdan parried the decisive kick from Carlisle’s French forward Bastien Hery to earn Liverpool a 3-2 shootout win and spare manager Brendan Rodgers a humiliating exit. Rodgers skipped the post-match press conference but after another inept performance, I cannot see him surviving much longer.

McClaren is another manager feeling the heat after his side, who have won none of their first five Premier League games, lost 1-0 at home to Wednesday. Lewis McGugan scored the game’s only goal, beating Newcastle goalkeeper Tim Krul with a low shot from outside the box in the 76th minute to send Wednesday into round four for the first time since they reached the semi-finals in 2002.

Wednesday’s reward was a home tie with Arsenal, who beta Tottenham Hotspur 2-1 in the north London derby thanks to a brace from unlikely match-winner Mathieu Flamini. The Gunners took the lead in the26th-minute lead when French holding midfielder Flamini followed in to score after Michel Vorm parried a long-range shot by Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain. Spurs were rewarded for a spell of sustained pressure when Calum Chambers poked Nacer Chadli’s cross into his own net in the 55th minute, only for Flamini to give Arsenal victory 12 minutes from time with a superb low volley from just outside the box.

Jose Mourinho’s Chelsea continued their recent revival by winning 4-1 at third-tier Walsall to record a third consecutive victory. With captain John Terry back in the team, Chelsea went 2-0 up when Ramires headed home before teeing up Loic Remy to score.

James O’Connor squeezed a shot past Asmir Begovic to bring Walsall back into the game on the stroke of half-time, but second-half goals from full debutant Kenedy and Pedro Rodriguez completed victory for the visitors. Chelsea will visit Stoke City in the fourth round.

Anthony Martial’s assured start to life at Manchester United continued as the French striker scored his fourth goal in three games in a 3-0 victory against second-tier Ipswich Town at Old Trafford. Wayne Rooney opened the scoring and 19-year-old Brazilian Andreas Pereira crowned his full debut with a stylish free-kick before substitute Martial found the net in stoppage time with a classy finish into the bottom-right corner. Next up for Louis van Gaal’s United is a home game with second-tier Middlesbrough.