CITY 4 PETERBOROUGH 4 (Peterborough won 3-2 on penalties)

VALLEY Parade’s season of goodwill is unlikely to ever extend as far as Steve Evans.

Billy Pearce may be the king of panto in Bradford but there remains only one true villain in the eyes of City fans.

Evans was back in the away dug-out for the first time since Boxing Day 2013 last night – and the faithful made it clear that he is still not on their Christmas card list.

With his equally animated sidekick Paul Raynor, the pair provided a running sideshow with the home crowd throughout this crazy FA Cup second-round replay.

But they once again had the last laugh as Peterborough sneaked through on a penalty shoot-out after the sides had fought out a wild 4-4 draw that featured 57 shots, a hat-trick, two disallowed goals and enough thrills and spills for a month.

Six years to the day that City famously humbled Arsenal in that unforgettable Capital One Cup quarter-final, they came up short in a penalty shoot-out.

Misses from Karl Henry, Paul Caddis and Jack Payne ensured Evans just about hung on to his unbeaten record against the Bantams – which now stands at 10 games with three different clubs.

But David Hopkin and the 3,486 crowd can take heart from the way City clambered back from a 3-1 deficit at half-time when the tie looked beyond them.

Three goals soon after the break turned the tables to the extent that they even led before hat-trick hero Ivan Toney came to Peterborough’s rescue.

But it was a thrilling contest – even if the defending from both sides was a bit choice at times – and certainly kept the small but lively audience on the edge of their seats.

Both sides had changed their keeper and neither covered themselves in glory.

Ben Wilson won’t forget his home debut in a hurry after Toney caught him off his line with a 45-yard free-kick to open the scoring in David Beckham fashion.

Toney then took his tally to eight goals in eight games – and six in five against the Bantams – when he headed home Marcus Maddison’s cross a minute later. He wasn’t finished, nor were City.

They clambered back with a quick response. This time it was Peterborough’s Aaron O’Malley at fault as he fumbled possession when rushing from his goal.

Rhys Bennett deflected David Ball’s attempt to steer it into the unguarded net against the post but George Miller was following in to tap home.

Ball should then have levelled but curled over the bar from close range after wrong-footing Mark O’Hara. O’Malley held on to Miller’s low drive as the action rattled along.

Tempers were rising as the yellow card count built, Raynor’s constant arm-waving presence on the touchline fuelling the reaction from the main stand.

City were coming back into it – only to suffer what seemed a hammer blow by conceding from the final kick of the half.

The tricky Siriki Dembele weaved his way past Caddis and drilled a low cross into the goal-mouth. Wilson stopped Jason Cummings’ back-heel but the rebound was gobbled up by Maddison.

But City hit back again – three times.

First Peterborough failed to clear when Lewis O’Brien’s shot spiralled into the air. Payne, having missed an overhead kick, still funnelled it back to Ball to finish.

Then Ball turned provider with his cross picking out two unmarked claret shirts at the far post as Caddis nodded his first City goal to level.

And as the contest was transformed, Hopkin’s side led for the first time. Payne’s corner was knocked down by Anthony O’Connor and Miller scrambled his second of the night.

Peterborough, though, were not done and levelled again as Toney claimed his hat-trick on 84 minutes from another Maddison cross.

O’Connor volleyed against the bar before another replay headed into extra-time. Adam Chicksen fired narrowly over at one end but Peterborough had the best chances through Joe Ward and Matt Godden.

And it was the visiting side who held their nerve in the penalties, despite one save from Wilson.

For City, who were watched by Scunthorpe assistant Kenny Black ahead of Stuart McCall’s return a week on Saturday, the focus now is purely on the battle for League One survival.