Blades cut West Ham cup run short
West Ham fans taunted their Sheffield United counterparts with chants about Carlos Tevez - only to see their latest big-money signing miss the decisive penalty after an even Capital One Cup tie at Upton Park.
This was the first meeting of the two sides since the Blades were relegated, largely thanks to Tevez's goals at West Ham - only for a legal wrangle over the Argentina international's ownership leading to the Hammers paying out almost 30 million pounds in compensation.
There are now two divisions separating the clubs but it is Sheffield United who progress into the third round after Enner Valencia, a 14 million-pound signing from Pachuca, was the only player to miss his spot-kick as tie could not be decided in normal time.
Stewart Downing lauded the depth of the squad now at Sam Allardyce's disposal but, with the West Ham boss making nine changes, his side struggled to show the class to see off a spirited Sheffield United.
Diafra Sakho was quiet but managed to put the Barclays Premier League side ahead with a well-taken first-half header, only for Winston Reid - captain for the evening - to score an unfortunate second-half own goal, with few chances created by either side as the game meandered into extra time and eventually to penalties.
Both sides converted their opening four spot-kicks before Valencia, who had wasted a couple of good chances during the night, saw his low effort saved by the impressive Mark Howard.
Blades' skipper Michael Doyle then stepped up to seal the win for Nigel Clough's side - who will see the result as a small piece of revenge for the whole Tevez saga.