Martins the hero for Blues

27 February 2011 06:30
Birmingham substitute Obafemi Martins scored a last-gasp winner to earn his side a shock 2-1 Carling Cup final success over Arsenal at Wembley. The on-loan Rubin Kazan player took advantage of a mix-up between Arsenal goalkeeper Wojciech Szczesny and Laurent Koscielny to tap into an empty net. Blues started positively and were on the wrong end of a controversial decision after only two minutes. Craig Gardner's through ball played in Lee Bowyer who was brought down inside the area by Szczesny. But one of the referee's assistants flagged for offside when replays showed that Bowyer had timed his run perfectly. Birmingham stunned the Gunners by taking a 27th-minute lead through Nikola Zigic. Former Arsenal winger Sebastian Larsson's corner was headed back towards goal by Roger Johnson - and Serbia international Zigic applied the finishing touch with a close-range header. Robin van Persie brought Arsenal level with his 14th goal of the campaign. Jack Wilshere's shot thudded against the crossbar but Andrey Arshavin was first to the loose ball and his cross was volleyed home by Van Persie. Ben Foster was increasingly involved in the action after the break and turned aside a Samir Nasri shot on the counter-attack. The England keeper then beat away a rising attempt from sub Nicklas Bendtner. But it was Martins who won it for Birmingham with a minute remaining of the 90. Koscielny and Szczesny were involved in a mix-up dealing with a Zigic flick on Martins turned in the loose ball.

Source: PA