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Pavlyuchenko goal sends Tottenham through to Wembley final


MOSCOW, January 22 (RIA Novosti) - A Roman Pavlyuchenko goal in the 118th minute of Tottenham Hotspur's Carling Cup semi-final tie against Burnley on Wednesday evening sent the London club through to a Wembley final against Manchester United.

Carling Cup holders Tottenham had won 4-1 in the first leg at their home stadium of White Hart Lane on January 6, and were expected to go through easily to the final. However, Burnley, in the second tier of English soccer, ran Tottenham ragged, and after 90 minutes were 3-0 ahead.

In most cup competitions, this would have meant victory for Burnley on the away goals rule, but Carling Cup rules stipulate that away goals only count as double after extra time, and the match went into an additional 30 minutes.

With just two minutes left before the end of the game, and what would have gone down as one of the most memorable comebacks in English soccer history, Pavlyuchenko struck home in trademark style from just inside the box after a pass from Benoit Assou-Ekotto.

The Russian international, who had replaced the Croatian Luka Modric in the 65th minute, then set up fellow striker Jermaine Defoe for Tottenham's second to break Burnley's hearts.

Pavlyuchenko, who joined Tottenham from Spartak Moscow in the summer for $28 million, has scored in every round of the Carling Cup. Overall, he has scored 11 goals in 23 games, just one behind the club's top scorer Darren Bent.

The Carling Cup final is on March 1.

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