CITY’S season is up and running - but it was a close squeak to get their name in the hat for tomorrow night’s Carabao Cup second-round draw.

It was all about getting through at Accrington tonight after the bitter disappointment of Crawley.

They managed that by showing steady nerves to win 4-1 in a penalty shoot-out after the game had finished in a 1-1 draw.

Alex Pattison had scored City’s first goal of the campaign to put them ahead right on half-time.

But Josh Andrews headed Accrington level in a very open second half to set up the tense finale. Thankfully, unlike the last time it went to penalties here in 2016, it was City who emerged victorious.

Accrington used to be a regular stop-off but this was City’s first visit for five years. It had not been a traditionally happy venue with no wins in six attempts dating back to their 3-2 late, late comeback triumph in Stuart McCall’s first spell in 2008.

Mark Hughes stuck with a strong team as promised with both changes enforced through suspension and injury.

Daniel Oyegoke sat out his one-game ban and Ash Taylor was ruled out with his Achilles. But Sam Stubbs was good to go after his knee problem and Matty Platt also came back in for a straight double swap in the back three.

The extended nine-man bench for the Carabao Cup included Kevin McDonald.

In contrast, Accrington’s stalwart boss John Coleman made eight changes from their winning return to League Two at the weekend.

Jamie Walker had looked bright in the first half on Saturday and threatened with his first run of the night. Cutting inside, he looked for Andy Cook who went down from a nudge in the box - but ref Martin Coy was unmoved.

Platt looked to get Cook on the chase but he was hustled off the ball by two red shirts.

It was a cagey first quarter with both sides feeling each other out without fashioning a chance.

Walker had a long-range effort blocked while Rosaire Longelo’s in-swinging cross was well gathered by Harry Lewis.

The football was neat enough but defences were cancelling each other out.

Pattison was getting through plenty of work again and fed Brad Halliday on the overlap but his cross-shot was straight into the keeper.

Bradford Telegraph and Argus: Andy Cook celebrates his penalty in front the fansAndy Cook celebrates his penalty in front the fans (Image: Thomas Gadd)

Walker was carried into the hoardings by a mistimed sliding tackle from Liam Coyle. The card for the Accrington midfielder was yellow rather than the red that the away fans shouted for.

City’s support filled the open terrace behind the goal and stretched over the halfway line in the seats of the Eric Whalley Stand.

They were up again when Cook was caught by Dan Martin as the temperature began to rise.

Clarke Oduor was then clipped by Shaun Whalley, who was also booked. Cook got a head on Richie Smallwood’s free-kick but it flew wide.

Pattison, though, got his sights spot on to break the deadlock in the first of four added minutes at the end of the half.

The build-up was route one, Lewis punting long, Cook flicking on and then it was all Pattison who bore down on goal full of confidence before slotting past the exposed Toby Savin.

Accrington still had time to fashion a response and Lewis was called into action with his first proper save to deny Korede Adedoyin before the whistle.

The City stopper came to their rescue again at the start of the second half after Whalley proved too quick for Platt, racing past him to shoot for the near post. But Lewis showed a strong arm to beat the ball away.

There was a concern when Cook needed lengthy treatment for a clash of heads as he won a corner. He re-emerged wearing a protective bandage and a new shirt without a number.

It hadn’t put him off as Cook immediately linked with Walker before testing Savin with a first-time shot.

Whalley remained a danger and Halliday brought him down for a booking, Tommy Leigh bending the free-kick past the post.

Lewis denied Whalley again with a two-handed save behind - but Accrington levelled from the corner as newly-arrived sub Josh Andrews planted a bullet header into the top corner.

City had to weather the storm as the home crowd, outnumbered by those from West Yorkshire, found their voice.

But they saw through the sticky period and Walker and Oduor both went close. Sub Alex Gilliead thought he should have had a penalty as he was knocked over.

Stubbs had to have his head bandaged like Cook after taking a whack from Andrews - extending the game into 10 added minutes before the inevitable conclusion.

Bradford Telegraph and Argus: Korede Adedoyin is floored after his spot-kick flopKorede Adedoyin is floored after his spot-kick flop (Image: Thomas Gadd)

City won the toss to stage the penalties at their end - and then proceeded to put them away with aplomb.

Cook beat Savin into the corner for the opener, then Gilliead and Walker both sent the keeper the wrong way.

In between, Jack Nolan smacked the bar to the jubilation of those behind the goal doing everything they could to put him off.

And Adedoyin completely lost his footing as he stepped up and only succeeded in clipping the ball against his other leg.

It wrong-footed Lewis who recovered to keep it out on the line but the ref had already signalled that it had been taken illegally.

It was down to Oduor to finish the job - which he did with another precise shot. Now all eyes turn to tomorrow’s draw.