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Bradford City 3-1 Aston Villa

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Wells: Opens the scoring for Bradford

Wells: Opens the scoring for Bradford

Goals from Nahki Wells, Rory McArdle and Carl McHugh gave Bradford a 3-1 Capital One Cup semi-final, first leg lead over Aston Villa.

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Wells had given the League Two outfit the lead in the first half, before McArdle doubled their advantage after the break at Valley Parade.

Andreas Weimann reduced the deficit before McHugh's late header gave Phil Parkinson's side a two-goal cushion to take to Villa Park for the second leg.

Villa started brightly and went close on five minutes when Charles N'Zogbia got a sight of goal, but saw his effort saved by goalkeeper Matt Duke.

Christian Benteke then wasted two great opportunities as he missed free headers inside the Bantams penalty area from respective Barry Bannan corners in the space of two minutes.

The Belgian hitman then got in down the left side of the hosts' area on 13 minutes, but this time Duke got down well to save.

The hosts took the lead on 19 minutes after a corner was only cleared to Zavon Hines on the edge of the area. And, when the former West Ham man's effort deflected off Bannan and into the path of Wells, he coolly stroked the ball past Shay Given.

Benteke tried his luck from 25 yards on the half hour but Duke parried that attempt, while Hines had an angled drive saved by Given at the other end four minutes later.

Bradford went close with two quick James Hanson headers, before Gabby Agbonlahor's strike just before half-time forced Duke into another crucial save to preserve the home team's slender lead.

Duke was called into action in the opening minutes of the second half to deny both Benteke and Agbonlahor after more good work by Bannan down the flank.

Darren Bent came off the bench and somehow headed over with the goal at his mercy on 67 minutes after Duke could only parry N'Zogbia's shot.

Villa were made to pay on 77 minutes when Gary Jones' cross was headed in at the near post by McArdle to make it 2-0.

The visitors did get a foot-hold back into the tie on 82 minutes when Weimann knocked a Benteke flick-on past Duke.

But the Bantams restored their two-goal cushion two minutes from time when McHugh powered a header from Jones' left-wing corner past Given to send the home fans into raptures.

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Posted: 08/01/13 22:04

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