Kelleher’s shootout saves see Liverpool scrape past Derby in Carabao Cup | Carabao Cup

Caoimhín Kelleher reprised his role as Liverpool’s Carabao Cup saviour as Jürgen Klopp’s team scraped into round four at the expense of League One Derby. The Republic of Ireland international, who scored Liverpool’s 11th and final penalty in the shootout victory over Chelsea in February, made three saves in another penalty shoo-out after a goalless 90 minutes at Anfield.

Kelleher saved from Conor Hourihane, Craig Forsyth and on-loan Everton striker Lewis Dobbin in the shoot-out after the introduction of several big names from the Liverpool bench had failed to break the deadlock in normal time. 18-year-old Stefan Bajcetic and Roberto Firmino failed to convert their penalties for Liverpool, and Darwin Núñez only just did, but Harvey Elliott sealed the holders’ passage with the fifth and final spot-kick.

The business intentions of Fenway Sports Group, Liverpool’s owner, was in no way a distraction in the third round tie. Liverpool simply lacked the precision to find a way past Wildsmith, although it was not all one-way traffic and Derby had their opportunities to cause an upset against the holders.

Derby had the backing of an impressive 5,600 away support and the defensive structure to contain a young, inexperienced Liverpool forward line. Klopp made 11 changes from the team that beat Tottenham on Sunday and gave five youngsters their full Liverpool debuts – Bobby Clark, son of former Newcastle and Fulham midfielder Lee, 18-year-old Spanish midfielder Bajcetic, forwards Layton Stewart and Melkamu Frauendorf, plus summer signing Calvin Ramsay. Technical quality was on display from all five, with Clark’s nutmegs and midfield runs catching the eye, although their understandable eagerness to impress contributed to a sloppy first-half display by the hosts.

Paul Warne’s side looked to hit Liverpool on the counterattack but, despite several determined runs down the right by Nathaniel Mendez-Laing, they did not have an attempt on Kelleher’s goal before the interval. Derby’s best opportunity fell to Eiran Cashin from a Mendez-Laing corner but the centre-half headed high into the Kop.

Liverpool, with a more experienced defence and Alex Oxlade-Chamberlain making a rare start in midfield, controlled proceedings without seriously troubling Joe Wildsmith in the visiting goal. Oxlade-Chamberlain was just wide with a volley when Craig Forsyth headed a corner from Kostas Tsimikas into his path on the edge of the area. The roles were reversed when Wildsmith palmed an Oxlade-Chamberlain cross on to the unmarked Tsimikas but with the same result, the left back slicing a volley wide when he should have struck the target at least. Liverpool’s best chance of the first half was created and missed by Stewart. A heavy first touch by Cashin on the edge of the Derby penalty area allowed the 20-year-old to feed Fabio Carvalho in space on the left. Carvalho picked out Stewart with the return cross but, while well-placed in front of goal, the striker was off-balance and skied his shot over.

The second half witnessed more attacking intent and quality from both teams, mercifully, and Derby captain Max Bird had a fine chance to break the deadlock when Louie Sibley’s dangerous low cross picked out his run into the Liverpool box. Bird’s first touch struck Nat Phillips but rebounded kindly into his path, inviting a shot that was dragged across Kelleher’s goal and wide.

Harvey Elliott celebrates after scoring the winning penalty.
Harvey Elliott celebrates after scoring the winning penalty. Photograph: Jon Super/AP

Wildsmith came under sustained pressure thereafter. The Derby goalkeeper reacted sharply to change direction and save a heavily deflected shot from Oxlade-Chamberlain that seemed destined for goal. He then pushed away a curling effort from Carvalho and saw Oxlade-Chamberlain slice over after Frauendorf’s back post headed was only half cleared by Haydon Roberts.

Improvement without an end product was not enough to satisfy Klopp and with 24 minutes remaining he summonsed Núñez, Firmino and Elliott from the bench in a bid to confirm Liverpool’s supremacy.

The impact of the triple substitution was almost immediate. Firmino and Elliott combined to release Oxlade-Chamberlain behind the Derby defence for the first time and, though he just got his toes to the ball, Wildsmith spread himself well to save.

The visiting keeper made an excellent stop with ten minutes left when the prominent Oxlade-Chamberlain floated a superb pass over the Derby rearguard into the run of Elliott. The midfielder attempted to steer a first time effort into the far corner but Wildsmith read the intention to flick the attempt to safety. He also foiled Firmino in the dying moments when the Brazilian headed Ramsay’s inviting cross towards the near corner.

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Angelo Ogbonna missed the crucial penalty as a youthful Blackburn dumped West Ham out of the Carabao Cup 10-9 on spot-kicks. After 19 successful penalties Ogbonna’s effort crashed off the underside of the crossbar to send Championship Rovers through to round four following a 2-2 draw at the London Stadium. 

It was a deserved win for a callow Rovers side with an average age of just 22 and a half as Jon Dahl Tomasson made 11 changes with more than one eye on Sunday’s Championship derby against promotion rivals Burnley. 

They led through an early goal from Jack Vale before Pablo Fornals hauled West Ham level and Michail Antonio put the hosts in front. 
But the substitute Ben Brereton Díaz, Rovers’ top scorer, sent the match to a shootout and Italian defender Ogbonna was the fall guy. 

Boubacar Traoré’s late winner sent Wolves through, the substitute striking with five minutes left to down much-changed Leeds and seal a 1-0 victory for the hosts. 

It settled an uneventful game which looked to be heading to penalties and gave new Wolves boss Julen Lopetegui and his coaches food for thought.  Lopetegui is due at the club’s Compton training base on Friday, before watching Saturday’s visit of Arsenal, before officially taking charge on Monday. 

The former Spain manager’s lieutenants were at Molineux having already briefly introduced themselves to the squad. PA Media

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Derby also had chances through their substitutes to deliver a cup shock. David McGoldrick sent Lewis Dobbin racing away from Joe Gomez down the right flank. The on-loan Everton striker took his shot first time but sent it bouncing into the arms of Kelleher.

McGoldrick should have done better when found unmarked at the back post by a deep cross into the area. His tame header was easily collected by Liverpool’s second choice keeper, however.

Torquay and Curzon Ashton take League One clubs to FA Cup replays | FA Cup

Will Goodwin struck in the fifth minute of stoppage time as the National League side Torquay salvaged a 2-2 draw against 10-man Derby in the first round of the FA Cup.

League One Derby looked on course to sail through after Will Osula struck in the 27th and 47th minutes. But the game turned on its head when Eiran Cashin was dismissed after he pulled back Goodwin in the penalty area before Asa Hall converted the spot-kick.

Goodwin then scored in the closing seconds to send the home supporters at Plainmoor wild and earn Torquay a replay.

Curzon Ashton will replay against Cambridge after a goalless draw at Tameside. Seventy places separate the sides but Mark Bonner’s League One team, who last season reached the fourth round with a 1-0 win at Newcastle, were unable to break the deadlock against their National League North opponents.

Wrexham booked their spot in the next round with a comfortable 3-0 victory over Oldham. Sam Dalby opened the scoring after 10 minutes when he tapped in from close range before Paul Mullin doubled the home side’s advantage 15 minutes later. Mullin, who celebrated his 28th birthday, then headed home Ben Tozer’s long throw shortly after the hour to seal Wrexham’s first second-round spot since 2018.

Woking’s clash against Oxford was postponed because of a waterlogged pitch at the Laithwaite Community Stadium.