StokeStoke City2Sheff WedSheffield Wednesday0

Stoke City 2-0 Sheffield Wednesday

Stoke celebrate
Phil Bardsley's first Stoke goal sealed the win

Stoke City reached the League Cup semi-finals for the first time since lifting the trophy in 1972 with a comfortable win over Sheffield Wednesday.

The Potters, who lost Peter Crouch to injury early on, led when his replacement Joselu crossed for Ibrahim Afellay to volley his first Stoke goal.

Wednesday's only meaningful effort saw Daniel Pudil fire over as Stoke dominated with 66% of the ball.

Phil Bardsley sealed the win, firing his first Stoke goal from 30 yards.

Mark Hughes' side - who knocked out holders Chelsea in round four - refused to become the Championship side's third Premier League scalp of the competition.

Their reward is a place in Wednesday's draw where they are guaranteed to be paired with a Premier League side for a two-legged tie.

Peter Crouch
The loss of Peter Crouch to injury was the only low point as Stoke progressed

Stoke's time for silverware?

Stoke are lower in the Premier League table than all of the sides still in the competition, but with the luxury of starting Xherdan Shaqiri and Bojan - two players who have won the Champions League - on the bench, they now have a squad capable of balancing league commitments with a trophy push.

"Over two legs, I would back ourselves against anybody," Hughes told the media after Tuesday's win.

Afellay - another Champions League winner - waited until his 15th game for City before breaking his duck with a confident volley past Joe Wildsmith, while Bardsley made amends for being sent off in the last round by slamming in off the post to put the result beyond doubt.

Wednesday arrived with only one loss in 14 but, sporting seven changes from Saturday's draw at Blackburn, they were comfortably dealt with, drawing just one routine save from Jack Butland late on.

It was efficient work by Stoke and the Britannia - noisy and hostile when it matters - will prove a tough away visit for whoever is paired with the Potters in the last four.

Ibrahim Afellay scores
Ibrahim Afellay (left) opened the scoring with a low volley - his last goal was for Olympiakos in March

Not Wednesday's night

Wednesday fans will look back on their League Cup run with much positivity, particularly a raucous night at Hillsborough when the Owls beat Arsenal 3-0.

And with only goal difference separating Carlos Carvalhal's side from the Championship play-offs, a push for promotion will now take centre stage.

The Portuguese manager may have expected more of a threat from his side on a night when 4,600 visiting fans made the trip, but the health of Tom Lees will be a greater concern.

The defender has played in every league game this season but left the field with an injury and could now miss Sunday's visit of Derby County.

Manager reaction

Stoke manager Mark Hughes: "If we'd allowed them a foothold in the game they could have caused problems but we didn't, which is pleasing. We restricted them after scoring the first goal. We would love to go all the way but there are some good teams remaining in the competition."

Sheffield Wednesday manager Carlos Carvalhal: "I'm not unhappy with the team, I thank the fans who pushed the team all the way. The fans are amazing. They are unbelievable. We give everything for them on the pitch."

What's next?

Wednesday can move into the top six if they beat third-placed Derby, while Stoke, who have suffered just two defeats in 12 matches, host Manchester City at lunchtime on Saturday.



Formation 4-2-3-1

  • 1Butland
  • 8JohnsonSubstituted forBardsleyat 45'minutes
  • 12Wilson
  • 26Wollscheid
  • 3Pieters
  • 20Cameron
  • 15Van GinkelBooked at 60mins
  • 19Walters
  • 14Afellay
  • 10ArnautovicSubstituted forWhelanat 88'minutes
  • 25CrouchSubstituted forJoseluat 13'minutes


  • 2Bardsley
  • 6Whelan
  • 11Joselu
  • 16Adam
  • 22Shaqiri
  • 27Bojan
  • 29Haugaard

Sheff Wed

Formation 4-4-2

  • 28Wildsmith
  • 32HuntSubstituted forMcGuganat 45'minutes
  • 15LeesSubstituted forPudilat 38'minutes
  • 5LoovensSubstituted forNuhiuat 77'minutes
  • 16Wiggins
  • 33Wallace
  • 20Lee
  • 4Hutchinson
  • 24SougouBooked at 53mins
  • 14Hooper
  • 18Lucas João


  • 6Semedo
  • 9Nuhiu
  • 10McGugan
  • 17Helan
  • 21López
  • 34Price
  • 36Pudil
Mark Clattenburg

Match Stats

Home TeamStokeAway TeamSheff Wed
Shots on Target

Live Text

  1. Post update

    Match ends, Stoke City 2, Sheffield Wednesday 0.

  2. Full Time

    Second Half ends, Stoke City 2, Sheffield Wednesday 0.

  3. Post update

    Foul by Phil Bardsley (Stoke City).

  4. Post update

    Lucas João (Sheffield Wednesday) wins a free kick on the left wing.

  5. Post update

    Jonathan Walters (Stoke City) wins a free kick on the right wing.

  6. Post update

    Foul by Rhoys Wiggins (Sheffield Wednesday).

  7. Substitution

    Substitution, Stoke City. Glenn Whelan replaces Marko Arnautovic.

  8. Post update

    Attempt saved. Lewis McGugan (Sheffield Wednesday) right footed shot from outside the box is saved in the bottom right corner.

  9. Post update

    Foul by Marc Wilson (Stoke City).

  10. Post update

    Kieran Lee (Sheffield Wednesday) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

  11. Post update

    Offside, Sheffield Wednesday. Sam Hutchinson tries a through ball, but Lucas João is caught offside.

  12. Post update

    Offside, Stoke City. Marco Van Ginkel tries a through ball, but Jonathan Walters is caught offside.

  13. Post update

    Foul by Marko Arnautovic (Stoke City).

  14. Post update

    Atdhe Nuhiu (Sheffield Wednesday) wins a free kick in the defensive half.

  15. Post update

    Jonathan Walters (Stoke City) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

  16. Post update

    Foul by Sam Hutchinson (Sheffield Wednesday).

  17. Substitution

    Substitution, Sheffield Wednesday. Atdhe Nuhiu replaces Glenn Loovens.

  18. Goal!

    Goal! Stoke City 2, Sheffield Wednesday 0. Phil Bardsley (Stoke City) from a free kick with a right footed shot to the centre of the goal.

  19. Post update

    Marko Arnautovic (Stoke City) wins a free kick in the attacking half.

  20. Post update

    Foul by Sam Hutchinson (Sheffield Wednesday).