Capital One Cup: Moyes hopes Mata move ends misery

MANCHESTER UNITED 2 vs SUNDERLAND 1

(3-3 on aggregate, After extra time)
Sunderland win 2-1 on penalties

MANCHESTER United closed in on the club-record £37m signing of midfielder Juan Mata last night, as fortunes on the pitch continuted to falter with defeat in the Capital One Cup semi-final on penalties.

Mata is expected in Manchester today for a medical having grown tired of a lack of first team opportunities at Chelsea this season.

His prospective new team-mates missed the chance to book a Wembley appearance last night though, missing four out of five penalties in a breathless shoot-out to heap the woe on manager David Moyes, whose team have secured one win from six matches since the turn of the year.

And Moyes conceded his side deserved their fate after a dreadful series of penalties.

“That was really poor, I expect better,” he said. “Ideally it wouldn’t have been the group of players we’d have chosen [to take the penalties]. Chicharito [Javier Hernandez] would have taken one but he was injured.

“In lots of games this season we’ve played well and haven’t got the rewards, but we didn’t deserve it, we didn’t perform.”

Sunderland have now beaten Chelsea and United on their road to Wembley and triumphant manager Gus Poyet hopes they can continue to give a good account of themselves against Manchester City in the final.

“It’s going to be incredible,” he said. “We need to be at our best, be organised, take our chances and hope they have a bad day. But we will make our fans proud if we play like we did here.”

United, trailing 2-1 from the first leg, drew level on aggregate on 36 minutes when defender Jonny Evans headed in unmarked from close range after Danny Welbeck flicked on Adnan Januzaj’s corner.

Sunderland looked to have won the tie in the final minute of extra time when United goalkeeper David De Gea spilt Phil Bardsley’s fizzing 20-yard effort into his side netting.

But seconds later Javier Hernandez fired Januzaj’s cross into the roof of the net from close range to cap a dramatic finish and send the match to a penalty shoot-out.

United held an immediate advantage after Craig Gardner spurned the first spot-kick over the crossbar. Welbeck did the same for United, who took the lead through Darren Fletcher after Stephen Fletcher missed for Sunderland.

Misses from Januzaj and Phil Jones amid successful spot-kicks from Marcos Alonso and Ki Sung-Yueng gave Adam Johnson the chance to send Sunderland to Wembley.

The former Manchester City man was denied by De Gea, but Rafael saw United’s final penalty saved by Vito Mannone as Sunderland advanced.