Our Carabao Cup campaign ended in disappointing fashion at Wembley Stadium on Wednesday evening as we threw away a two-goal half-time lead to exit the competition with a 3-2 defeat to West Ham United.
Goals from Moussa Sissoko and Dele Alli capped a commanding first half performance, but we were left stunned at the final whistle after the visitors hit back in the second half with a brace from Andre Ayew and the winner from Angelo Ogbonna.
Only six minutes had gone when Ben Davies and Fernando Llorente combined to set Heung-Min Son free down the left, who in turn found Sissoko and he finished neatly past Adrian. The Hammers goalkeeper saved well from a Dele header on 18 minutes, but could do nothing about our second, Dele’s curling shot deflecting off the head of Declan Rice and in off the far post.
But while we dominated the first half, the Hammers hit three goals without reply inside 20 minutes of the second period to turn the tie on its head. Ayew pulled one back on 55 minutes, pouncing from close range after captain on the night Michel Vorm had saved well from Edimilson Fernandes, before the Hammers striker levelled the scores five minutes later.
And it got worse in the 70th minute when Ogbonna’s glancing header from Manuel Lanzini’s cross beat Vorm and went in off the far post. We applied some late pressure to try to salvage the tie, but the equaliser wouldn’t come and we tumbled out of the competition.