Phil Bardsley completed his zero-to-hero transformation as Sunderland snatched a 2-1 League Cup win over Southampton on Wednesday.
The Scotland international found himself frozen out of the first-team picture under former manager Paolo Di Canio, but has returned to action under the Italian's replacement, Gus Poyet, and netted his first goal for the club to help steer them into the League Cup quarter-finals.
Bardsley struck just before the hour with a scrappy effort after a desperate first half, with a much-changed Southampton unable to muster any response.
Sebastian Larsson netted with a fine finish in the closing stages to seal Poyet's 100 per cent home start as Sunderland boss, having also beaten local rivals Newcastle United at the Stadium of Light, with Maya Yoshida's late header counting for nothing.
Sunderland's reward for the win is another home tie, against Chelsea next month.
Wes Brown made his first start for Sunderland since January 2012 after a lengthy injury lay-off, with goalkeeper Vito Mannone also brought in for Keiren Westwood (concussion) among seven changes.
Southampton boss Mauricio Pochettino handed a first senior start to 18-year-old midfielder Harrison Reed as only striker Jay Rodriguez was retained from the weekend draw at Stoke.
One of the 10 changes, Tadanari Lee, went close twice in the opening five minutes, but was off-target each time.
Emanuele Giaccherini was presented with a good chance to score his second goal of the season against Southampton, having netted in August's draw, but he could only mis-hit Ondrej Celustka's cut-back out of play.
The game was devoid of tempo as the hosts dominated possession but failed to penetrate Southampton's stubborn defence. Jozy Altidore went close on 26 minutes, firing wide from 25 yards.
Gaston Ramirez, a goalscorer in Southampton's previous two League Cup outings this term, wasted the half's best chance with two minutes to play, curling over after Jack Cork's neat pass.
The second half got under way in stunning fashion as Altidore controlled a long ball perfectly into Craig Gardner's path but the midfielder's low drive was shovelled away by Kelvin Davis.
However, the former Sunderland keeper was at fault just before the hour, failing to keep hold of Altidore's header, with Bardsley pouncing to bundle the ball home, despite Jos Hooiveld's efforts on the line.
Southampton duo Calum Chambers and Gaston Ramirez each tumbled in the penalty area, but saw appeals for a spot-kick waved away by referee Lee Mason.
Home hearts were in mouths with 15 minutes to go as Mannone smashed a clearance into substitute Adam Lallana, but looked on in relief as the ball bobbled just wide.
And the win was sealed with four minutes of normal time to play as Altidore teed up substitute Larsson and he fired low across Davis.
Yoshida sent nerves trembling just two minutes later, heading home after Hooiveld nodded a free-kick across goal, but it was not enough for Pochettino's side.
|Coach: G. Poyet|
for O. Celustka 70'
for E. Giaccherini 90+2'
|La Liga Wrap: Strugglers Rayo, Malaga pick up valuable away wins|
|Primeira Liga: Maritimo 2 Vitoria Guimaraes 1|
|UEFA Champions League Preview: Paris Saint-Germain v Bayer Leverkusen|
|Turkish Super Lig Wrap: Fenerbahce, Trabzonspor clash abandoned|
|Seedorf upbeat over Milan chances|
|Wenger outlines Arsenal belief|
|Russian Premier League Wrap: Lokomotiv go top, Anzhi post first win|
|UEFA Champions League Preview: Barcelona v Manchester City|
|Castro calls for fans´ support|
|Survival fight wide open, says Mutch|
|Bruce calls for league focus|
|Hoeness admits tax fraud|
|Shea returns to Stoke|
|Van den Brom leaves Anderlecht|
|Stevens ready for Stuttgart challenge|
|Liverpool clash excites Carrick|
|Villa eyeing top-half finish, claims Bertrand|
|Silva happy to remain in Paris|
|Gosling admits FA charge|
|Getafe confirm Contra as new coach|
|Reina considers future America move|
|Giroud: We must believe against Bayern|
|Wolves lodge complaints over alleged racist abuse|
|Gladbach sign Sommer to replace Ter Stegen|
|Getafe part company with Garcia|
|Strootman World Cup hopes in serious doubt|
|Clyne backs Palace to survive|
|Liverpool striving for perfection, says Allen|
|Simeone expecting tough Milan test|
|De Guzman confident ahead of West Brom clash|
|Guardiola wary of Arsenal threat|
|Mel speculation is ´crazy´, says Foster|
|Taarabt not fearing Atletico|
|Mourinho expects to lose Torres for ´couple of weeks´|
|Heitinga: Survival a trophy for Fulham|
|Carvajal plays down injury fears|
|Oxlade-Chamberlain eyes Arsenal cup success|
|Benitez praises Reina, Higuain|
|Shaw focusing on Southampton not England|
|Bayern must be aggressive, says Guardiola|
|Venezuela Primera Division Wrap: Zamora increase advantage with Tachira scalp|
|Uruguay Primera Division Wrap: Nacional capitalise on Fenix fumble|
|Liga MX Wrap: Tigres UANL end Cruz Azul unbeaten run|
|Ecuador Primera A Wrap: Independiente, Loja slip up to send Emelec top|
|Costa Rica Primera Division Wrap: Wins for Herediano, Deportivo Saprissa|
|Liga del Futbol Profesional Boliviano Wrap: Club Universitario open gap|
|Chile Primera Division Wrap: Colo Colo cruise past Union La Calera|
|Benitez: 11th-hour injuries could not halt Napoli|
|La Liga Wrap: Real capitalise on Barca slip-up, Valencia and Bilbao draw|
|Primeira Liga Wrap: Benfica extend lead, Porto close in on Sporting|
|Garcia frustrated by toothless Roma|
|Ligue 1 Wrap: Lille pull clear of Saint-Etienne, Lyon stage dramatic fightback|
|Thohir hints at Zanetti retirement|
|Serie A Wrap: Callejon sinks Roma, Juventus equal record|
|Ancelotti urges Real focus|
|Lazio fans boycott match in protest|
|CAF Confederation Cup Wrap: Djoliba, Petro de Luanda progress|
|CAF Champions League Wrap: Al Ahly survive after shootout, Cotonsport hammer Flambeau|
|League One Preview: Sheffield United out to build on cup exploits|
|UEFA Champions League Preview: Atletico Madrid v Milan|
|UEFA Champions League Preview: Bayern Munich v Arsenal|
|La Liga: Real Madrid 3 Levante 0|
|Pellegrini wants reaction in Barcelona|
|Championship Preview: Derby aim to bounce back, QPR face Brighton|
|Bundesliga Wrap: Dortmund edge Freiburg, Mainz rescue point|
|Rosler revels in Wigan success|
|Eredivisie Wrap: Ajax held, Twente beaten|
|Kehl is Dortmund´s man with a plan|
|Poyet eager to forget cup exploits|
|Thai Premier League Wrap: Muang Thong United, Buriram United with perfect starts|
|FA Cup: Manchester City 1 Wigan Athletic 2|
|Mazzarri warns Inter after narrow win|
|Bruce excited by ´great´ FA Cup draw|
|Mata optimistic ahead of key games|
|Mata optimistic ahead of key games|
|League Two Preview: Chesterfield eye riposte, Scunthorpe meet Southend|
|Bundesliga: Freiburg 0 Borussia Dortmund 1|
|Hull to face Sheffield United in FA Cup semis|
|Powell switches attention to league after Cup exit|
|Montella bemoans slow Fiorentina start|
|Serie A: Inter 1 Torino 0|
|FA Cup: Hull City 3 Sunderland 0|
|Conte declares Juve ´50 per cent champions´|
|Clough aiming for more glory days|
|Championship: Blackburn Rovers 1 Burnley 2|
|CSL Wrap: Guangzhou Evergrande, Shandong Luneng make winning starts|
|Etherington set to leave Stoke|
|FA Cup: Sheffield United 2 Charlton Athletic 0|
|Leverkusen´s Hegeler set to miss rest of season|
|Hodgson wants to see out England contract|
|Serie A: Juventus 1 Fiorentina 0|
|Garcia does not fear Getafe sack|
|Gourcuff: Blanc is not a coach|
|Martinez delighted with ´fresh´ Barkley|
|Calderon believes Betis can survive|
|K-League Wrap: Ulsan gain Pohang revenge, Jeonbuk beat Busan|
|Abbas lodges complaint over alleged racist abuse|
|A-League Wrap: Brisbane extend lead, Perth hold Wellington|
|Solskjaer praises ´leader´ Caulker|
|Defeat to Fiorentina was a ´wake-up call´, says Conte|
|Wenger confident ahead of Bayern challenge|
|Hughton frustrated at missed opportunities|
|Mourinho insists title in City´s hands|
|Stuttgart replace Schneider with Stevens|
|MLS Wrap: Vancouver thrash Red Bulls, Sporting fails in Seattle|
|Ranieri hails Berbatov´s performance after maiden goal|
|Schneider refuses to ´run away´ from Stuttgart|
|´Loyalty´ means nothing to Hodgson|
|CONCACAF Champions League Preview: Cruz Azul next for Sporting|
|Hoddle: Sherwood should have kept complaints in-house|
|Penalty hero Leno worried about Leverkusen´s ´uncertainty´|
|Keller praises Schalke´s ´right response´|
|AFC Champions League Preview: Evergrande face tricky trip|
|Ancelotti hails Isco as ´the new Seedorf´|
|La Liga Wrap: Barcelona lose again, Atletico go top|
|Simeone applauds ´specialist´ Villa|