Manchester City increased the pressure on Sunderland manager Dick Advocaat by putting the Black Cats to the sword in a 4-1 win at the Stadium of Light in the Capital One Cup third round.
All of City’s goals came in a rampant first half display, opening the scoring through Sergio Aguero’s penalty after Jesus Navas was felled.
Kevin De Bruyne grabbed his second goal in a week after exchanging passes with Raheem Sterling, before Sterling’s shot was deflected into his own net by stricken Sunderland goalkeeper Vito Mannone to make it 3-0.
The England winger added a classy fourth soon after with the outside of his boot as the visitors, despite Ola Toivonen’s late consolation, coasted into the fourth round.
Elsewhere, in the first second city derby in nearly five years, a Rudy Gestede goal proved the difference as Aston Villa edged out arch rivals Birmingham 1-0 at Villa Park.
Gestede powered home a header from Jordan Amavi’s cross just after half time on a nervy night for the Villans, and they survived despite Jacques Maghoma wasting a gilt-edged opening late on by firing straight at Brad Guzan.
While Birmingham were unable to trump their Premier League opponents, Hull claimed the shock of the night with a 1-0 win over a much-changed Swansea outfit.
Garry Monk made ten changes to his Swans team from the weekend, and it cost him as David Meyler struck just before half time for a Tigers side boasting Jake Livermore in their starting XI for the first time since his cocaine ban.
Both Everton and Stoke survived spirited performances from Championship sides, with the former coming from a goal down to beat Reading 2-1 at the Madjeski Stadium.
The Royals went ahead before half time through Nick Blackman’s seventh of the season, but two brilliant goals from Ross Barkley and Gerard Deulofeu ensured the Toffees progressed.
Stoke, meanwhile, were thankful to a turn of pace and finish from Peter Crouch as the former England man clinched a 1-0 victory over Fulham at Craven Cottage.
Middlesbrough ran out comfortable winners in the all-Championship affair with Wolves, as an Albert Adomah brace and Diego Fabbrini sealed Aitor Karanka’s side’s place in the next round.
Two ties went to extra time, with Leicester relying on a late Andy King header to edge out West Ham 2-1 at the King Power Stadium.
Joe Dodoo had initially given the Foxes a first-half lead with his fourth goal of the competition but the Hammers responded almost immediately through Mauro Zarate, before King struck the telling blow with four minutes of extra time remaining.
And Bournemouth needed penalties to beat a resilient Preston side after it finished 2-2 following an additional half an hour.
After Jordan Hugill cancelled out Shaun MacDonald’s early goal, a late Daniel Johnson penalty meant more spotkicks after Marc Pugh had restored the Cherries’ lead.
And it was the Premier League side who held their nerve from the spot, with Johnson failing to emulate his extra-time effort as he missed the crucial spotkick to see the visitors run out 3-2 winners.
Capital One Cup third round results:
Aston Villa 1-0 Birmingham
Fulham 0-1 Stoke
Hull 1-0 Swansea
Leicester 2-1 West Ham (AET)
Middlesbrough 3-0 Wolves
Preston 2-2 Bournemouth (AET) – Bournemouth won 3-2 on penalties
Sunderland 1-4 Manchester City
Reading 1-2 Everton