Boss Paul Lambert today revealed his League Cup pain and admitted Aston Villa’s Bradford bashing was the worst point of his reign.
The club was dumped out of the Capital One Cup semi-final by the League Two side last season, losing 4-3 on aggregate to plunge the campaign into crisis before finally winning their relegation battle.
Villa aim to erase those memories when Rotherham visit in the second round tonight.
Lambert said: “Personally the worst moment? Oh for heaven’s sake yes, because the results in the league weren’t even going for us either, so you had a double hit.
“There’s no doubt whatsoever. The two Bradford games were low, even though after the first one we still had a chance in the second one. It was still a blow to lose it.
“But full credit to the team they stuck with it, got together and did great.”
Villa last won the League Cup in 1996 and were beaten finalists in 2010 and Lambert is keen to end the 17-year trophy drought.
He said: “Everyone knows the Premier League is the bread and butter but a back-up competition, if you're in it, you try and win it. You need luck with the draw and try to get a home tie, which we've got.”
It is Villa’s last game until they host Newcastle on September 14 because of the international break and the Chelsea match being moved forward.
Lambert said he will not field a weakened side against the League One Millers, who are unbeaten this season.
He said: “The team I play will be strong, it will be a strong side regardless of who I play. I know we’ve got two and a bit weeks before we play again.
“We're at home and we want to win. We have to do what we've been doing in the last three games, perform at that level and we have a chance to get through.
Meanwhile, Villa have been linked with bringing Porto defender Abdoulaye Ba on a season long loan, while outcast Enda Stevens has joined League One Notts County on a month’s loan. The left-back played in the Magpies’ 4-2 League Cup defeat to Liverpool last night.