We have Danny Welbeck to thank, as our side progressed to the Carabao Cup Semi-Final for the first time since 2011.

A sem-final spot is not to be sniffed at in these times of uber-competitiveness. Every match is hotly contested, and the bottom line is that we are one step away from a trip to Wembley that doesn’t involve that lot next door.

Welbeck’s solitary goal in the 42nd minute was enough to separate us from West Ham, unlike last week when our first team couldn’t generate enough to score in a 0-0 stalemate.

This was a vast difference from that game, but not in terms of goalmouth action. This match was even less entertaining, but the men that took to the field was a completely different eleven aside from the inclusion of Olivier Giroud.

David Ospina took the gloves and wasn’t stretched at all during the game. This was in no small part down to the efforts of Rob Holding and Calum Chambers, who performed excellently in dealing with Javier Hernandez and in the second half, Andy Carroll and Diafre Sakho. Holding has had ample opportunity to impress this season, but Chambers has been on the backburner a lot longer. This display is a shot in the arm to his hopes of cutting it at the club.

Mathieu Debuchy and Sead Kolasinac took the left and right back spots and gave the flanks some much needed experience. Debuchy in particular was effective, and in recent outings, has put some real pressure on the sporadic Hector Bellerin.

In midfield, Francis Coquelin and Mohamed Elneny gave our engine room some real bite and this was a good thing, as this game was fought in the trenches to some degree. It wasn’t particularly fought with ill-feeling, but the game hinged on supremacy in the centre, so Coquelin and Elneny played well to keep any counter-attack attempts from Moyes’s side quiet.

This was West Ham’s ethos in the game. They were happy to cede possession to us, and looked to hit us on the break. The few times they did get the ball though, we broke their moves down and kept our hand on their neck.

We weren’t exactly dangerous though. Giroud, Walcott and Welbeck didn’t construct many moments of danger, but Welbeck did grab the winner. Mathieu Debuchy’s header across goal being turned in by the England man. Welbeck had made a great start to the season but injuries and poor form cost him his place, so this was a welcome sight for all.

Jo Willock had perhaps the most rewarding night’s work. The 19 year old was pushed a little further forward than usual and he gave a composed performance on and off the ball. He failed to craft many genuine opportunities, but it was still a pleasing performance.

Some were looking forward to the inclusion of Jack Wilshere but his omission speaks more for his recent elevated standing rather than any struggles. Aaron Ramsey has missed the last two games and will need some time to regain his sharpness, and Wilshere has taken his chance well. With our game against Liverpool on Friday, we were wrapping Jack in cotton wool for the game.

Our second string did enough to gain passage to the penultimate stage of the competition, and that is all we can ask for. With our team as inconsistent as ever, any match won is a good match. We didn’t have many thrills or spills, but if it ends with a bit of silverware or even a trip to Wembley for some lucky fans, then it’ll be worth it.

Good times keep the wheels rolling, and of course our attention is on a huge match against Liverpool, but we defeated a fellow Premier League side to grab a semi-final spot. Let them roll is what I say.