Ahmed Elmohamady strike sends Villa into last eight

By Nick Mashiter, PA

Ahmed Elmohamady downed Wolves to send Aston Villa into the quarter-finals of the Carabao Cup.

The defender grabbed a second-half winner to clinch a 2-1 victory as the hosts reached the last eight for the first time since 2012.

Patrick Cutrone did cancel out Anwar El Ghazi’s opener before missing a glorious chance to level for a second time.

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Villa never looked in serious trouble, though, and they remain in the hunt for a trophy they last won in 1996.

It was Wolves’ 21st game of the season and boss Nuno Espirito Santo’s 11 changes suggested the competition was low on his priority list.

Teenagers Taylor Perry, Dion Sanderson and Chem Campbell were handed full debuts and, despite Cutrone’s brief leveller, youthful Wolves were rarely a threat.

They allowed five-time winners Villa, who made nine changes, to make the early running and Max Kilman made a vital block to thwart Trezeguet after he darted into the box.

Villa tried to overpower their visitors, their experience outweighing Wolves’ exuberance.

Forward Campbell, at 16 years and 304 days, became Wolves’ second youngest player ever and he dragged wide from the edge of the box but it was a rare foray for the visitors.

Villa remained on top and it was no surprise when they took the lead after 28 minutes.

It was well crafted from the hosts, who pulled Wolves across the box before Henri Lansbury slipped in El Ghazi and his low effort squirmed under John Ruddy’s outstretched hand.

Outmuscled on the pitch and with no established outfield player on the bench, any hopes Wolves had of their first quarter-final in 23 years appeared slim.

Yet they levelled out of the blue nine minutes into the second half.

Perry was encouraged to cut into the area and Cutrone pounced to divert the ball past Jed Steer from five yards for just his second goal in 17 games.

Parity was short-lived, though, as Villa won the tie less than three minutes later.

Lansbury was fouled and he aimed a low free-kick to the near post where Elmohamady got ahead of Bruno Jordao to turn in.

A routine game had woken up and Cutrone should have made it 2-2 after 59 minutes when he seized on Neil Taylor’s loose pass to run clean through, only for Steer to save his low effort.

El Ghazi twice went close to a third, seeing a header saved and a shot deflect wide, before Lansbury could have wrapped victory up with 10 minutes left.

Trezeguet’s cross found the unmarked midfielder but he planted a horribly miscued header wide from six yards.

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