Sir Alex Ferguson used a good mix of youth and experience for the trip to Elland Road, starting with the likes of Ben Amos, Ezekiel Fryers, Fabio and Federico Macheda alongside Owen, Giggs, Michael Carrick and Park Ji-sung and his selection choice paid off handsomely.
Owen made it 11 goals in 12 starts for United with his 15th and 32nd minute finishes whilst Giggs put the icing on the cake on the stroke of half-time as the reigning Premier League champions continued their free-flowing beginning to the campaign.
James Collins had headed the Shrews in front in the 16th minute before Gibbs leveled just after the half-hour mark but the most impressive display of the night came from Gunners new boy Oxlade-Chamberlain who opened his account for his new club with a 25-yard effort on the hour. Chelsea loanee Benayoun added a third with just over 10 minutes remaining for his first Gunners goal as Arsene Wenger’s men saved the blushes of the North Londoners with a stronger second half display.
Wolves hammered Championship Millwall 5-0 at the Molineux with Dave Edwards, back from about six months on the sidelines, opening the scoring early before Adam Hammill, George Elokobi, James Spray and Adlene Guedioura added to the tally for Mick McCarthy.
In the remainder of the first night of third round Carling Cup matches, Aldershot Town came from behind to defeat Rochdale 2-1, Bolton won 2-0 at Aston Villa thanks to goals from Chris Eagles and Gael Kakuta, Burnley got the better of MK Dons with a 2-1 result at Turf Moor after trailing early, Blackburn Rovers managed to get past League One Leyton Orient 3-2 and Crystal Palace edged Middlesbrough 2-1.
And two matches went to extra-time with Nottingham Forest coming from behind on three occasions against Newcastle United only to fall 4-3 when Magpies skipper Fabricio Coloccini headed home in the 122nd minute whilst Peter Crouch converted his spot-kick to help Stoke City beat his former club Tottenham 7-6 on penalties after it finished 0-0 after 120 minutes.
2011/12 Carling Cup third round scores
Nottingham Forest (CHA): 3 (Robbie Findley 46’, Matt Derbyshire 66’, Marcus Tudgay 114’)
Newcastle United (PREM): 4 (Peter Lovenkrands 39’/(p) 60’, Danny Simpson 93, Fabricio Coloccini 120+2’)
City Ground, Nottingham