Andy Reid scored twice as Sunderland swept past League One Norwich 4-1 at Carrow Road and into the third round of the Carling Cup.
The Republic of Ireland midfielder - who had netted only two goals since his move from Charlton - was one of nine changes by manager Steve Bruce for the clash against the team he lifted the Milk Cup with back in 1985.
The Mackems were, though, still far too good for City, whose main concern under new boss Paul Lambert will be getting back into the Coca-Cola Championship at the first attempt.
Although the home side had started brightly, Norwich were undone all too easily on the break.
Teemu Tainio set the ball rolling after 26 minutes, and then Reid netted a well-taken double to put the tie beyond Lambert's men before half-time.
Wes Hoolahan reduced the deficit just after the hour, only for Owain Tudur Jones to quickly deflect a corner into his own net.
Norwich finished with only nine men when defender Michael Spillane was sent off for a professional foul on Frazier Campbell, and keeper Ben Alnwick suffered up a cut to his face.
Sunderland now prepare for their Barclays Premier League clash at Stoke, while next up for Norwich is a long trip to Hartlepool - which just about sums up the current difference between the two clubs.
Craig Gordon came into goal, with only captain George McCartney and striker Kenwyne Jones retaining their places from the side which beat Blackburn.
It looked like Norwich could take advantage during the early exchanges.
The home fans - in a crowd just over 12,000, well short of that for the game against Wycombe on Saturday - were calling for a penalty after just six minutes when Nyron Nosworthy bundled over teenage striker Luke Daley.
Referee Anthony Taylor, though, was unimpressed.
Sunderland, though, looked dangerous on the break.
On 12 minutes, Reid whipped the ball over, which Campbell turned goalwards with a stunning over-head effort. On-loan Tottenham keeper Alnwick got his fingertips to the rasping shot, which was just enough to tip it onto the crossbar.
Norwich were riding their luck, but broke clear when Simon Whaley went into the right side of the penalty area. However, his weak shot was saved by Gordon.
The Scottish keeper was then called on again to touch over Simon Lappin's long-range strike.
Sunderland took the lead on 26 minutes.
Jones brushed off the challenge of Doherty before darting into the right side of the penalty area and cut the ball back to Tainio, who drilled in a low shot from 10 yards.
Before Norwich had a chance to respond, it was 2-0.
Sunderland broke away down the left through Reid.
From just inside the box, the winger chipped a perfectly-weighted ball over the keeper and into the far corner.
It was then 3-0 on 36 minutes as Norwich were once again torn apart on the break.
A string of one-touch passes picked out Campbell in the middle, who in turn fed Reid on the overlap, and he drilled the ball into the top corner.
At the end of the first half, Gordon saved well from Tudur Jones, the Wales midfielder drilling in a low shot from 15 yards.
Sunderland replaced Jones with Daryl Murphy for the second half. Norwich upped their tempo following the restart.
In the 63rd minute, Norwich's pressure finally paid off.
Jon Otsemobor's cross from the right was headed against the far post by substitute Cody McDonald - and Hoolahan knocked the ball into an unguarded net.
Chris Martin then just failed to connect with a low cross at the far post.
However, any thoughts of a comeback were quickly ended when Tudur Jones deflected a corner into his own net.
Spillane, as the last defender, was sent off on 82 minutes for pulling back Campbell, who slid into the keeper and Alnwick had to go off for treatment to a cut face.
With all three substitutes used, McDonald went in goal. However, he could do little but watch Carlos Edwards crash a 25-yard shot against the bar.