Match Report by Robbie Amins for talklfc
Sinama-Pongolle was the Liverpool hero and Freddie Kanoute the Tottenham villain as he cancelled out Jermaine Defoe's extra-time opener from the spot before following suit to settle the shoot-out after two misses from the home side.
Jermain Defoe gave Spurs the lead their dominance - if not their finishing - had deserved after 107 minutes of wasted chances, only for Kanoute to inexplicably handle a harmless cross in his own box.
Florent Sinama-Pongolle swept home the spot-kick and forced a tie that Tottenham should have comfortably ended in normal time into the lottery of a penalty shoot-out.
With the scores tied at 2-2, Kanoute was then the first player to miss for Tottenham and though Darren Potter had his effort saved by home goalkeeper Paul Robinson, Michael Brown gave Liverpool the advantage when he skied his effort over the crossbar.
And it was left to Sinama-Pongolle, the 20-year-old, to fire his penalty to Robinson's left - the opposite corner to his extra-time spot-kick - and propel Liverpool into a semi-final clash with Watford.
There was a first Liverpool start for former Real Madrid midfielder Antonio Nunez and a full debut for David Raven, the 18-year-old centre-half who many have high hopes for. He was outstanding at rightback.
Spurs dominated the first half but left their scoring boots at home. The London side finally made the breakthrough after 108 minutes, Kanoute beating the offside trap on the left and squaring the ball to Defoe who finished with aplomb.
Spurs were nearly home and dry – but after Robinson saved superbly from Pongolle, Kanoute handled the resulting corner in full view of the referee and Pongolle equalised with three minutes remaining.
Tottenham on paper should have beaten Liverpool but their side of first-team regulars could not rise to the occasion even though Benitez had left his big guns at home. The Anfield club regard the League Cup as fourth in their list of priorities even though they are seventh in the Premiership and in danger of going out of the Champions League next week.
But Spurs were desperate to progress in the League Cup and ideally use it as a route into Europe. Now Jol and the Spurs faithful are facing up to a bleak winter.