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Bradford City's giant-killing Capital One Cup campaign continued with a penalty kick victory over Arsenal.
Bradford City's giant-killing Capital One Cup campaign continued with a penalty kick victory over Arsenal Tuesday.
Garry Thompson's 16th-minute goal gave Bradford City the advantage, which held until the late-going in regulation time. Bradford City extended its streak of penalty-kick victories to nine, including an elimination of Wigan Athletic on penalties in the Capital One competition Oct. 30. Thompson converted off a Gary Jones free kick after a Thomas Vermaelen foul. Vermaelen was in the center of most of the decisive action, compensating by tying the score in the 87th minute, then missing the final penalty kick.
Bradford City, in 18th place in League 2, survived three near-misses by the Gunners during extra time.
Bradford broke through in the 15th minute with their first real chance, as a free kick caused havoc in the Arsenal box and Thompson volleyed home for a shock lead.
The Gunners came close to an equaliser in the 37th minute after Francis Coquelin struck a shot against the post that bounced away to safety.
Arsenal forward Gervinho then scuppered a fizzing cross in front of an empty goal, a stunning miss that was almost compounded when Nahki Wells sent a shot just wide at the other end.
The visitors increased the pressure after the interval, but a long-range strike from substitute Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain was the best opportunity they could muster in the face of some resolute defence.
In the 87th minute, Vermaelen was left unmarked at the back post and headed home from close range.
The game then went into extra time, with the best chance falling to Santi Cazorla, who hit the bar with a long shot early in the second period.
With neither side able to find another goal, a penalty shootout was to decide which team would go through to the semi-finals.
Arsenal missed two early spot-kicks in the shootout but Bradford failed to take advantage with a pair of misses of their own, but when Vermaelen stepped up to take his side's final penalty and hit the woodwork, the hosts were celebrating a memorable win.
In Tuesday's other quarterfinal, Aston Villa defeated Norwich City 4-1 in an enthralling encounter at Carrow Road.
Matt Duke's goalkeeping kept Bradford City in contention during regulation time and extra time, then he saved a Santi Cazorla shot in penalties. Vermaelen sent Arsenal's fifth penalty off the left post, leading to wild celebration scenes at the Coral Windows Stadium.