Citizens see off Liverpool on penalties
Manchester City have won the Capital One Cup after beating Premier League rivals Liverpool on penalties.
The two sides couldn’t be separated throughout the 120-minutes, and it took a penalty shoot-out between the two to end the final at Wembley.
It was the first silverware on offer for the season, and with both managers fielding strong teams, it was clear that both Manuel Pellegrini and Jurgen Klopp wanted to lift the trophy.
As for the game, it was a fairly quiet first-half, with Sergio Aguero going closest to scoring, but his shot was tipped onto the post superbly by Simon Mignolet.
The game finally had a goal in the second-half, but it came from an unlikely source as Fernandinho lashed home from a tight angle. Questions asked over Mignolet’s goalkeeping as he should have been keeping it out.
With the game nearing it’s conclusion, it was Philippe Coutinho who rescued Liverpool and took the game to extra-time after he pounced on a loose ball in the penalty area.
During the extra-time period, Manchester City had chances to win the game, but Mignolet made a couple of top saves to deny the Citizens and after 120-minutes, the game went to penalties.
Liverpool started the shoot-out well, with Emre Can scoring his and Fernandinho hitting the post, but it all turned around quickly thanks to City goalkeeper Willy Caballero.
The Argentine then saved the next three spot-kicks from Lucas Leiva, Coutinho and Adam Lallana.
Yaya Toure was the man to step up for the decisive penalty and he had no problems slotting home to give City a 3-1 win on penalties.
Fernandinho, speaking to BBC Radio 5 live: “After all it feels very good – the emotion. The team worked very hard and we deserved victory. Caballero – amazing today. He was so fast and waited to the last second to go to the ball and he did it very well. We are very happy.
“I hope we can win more trophies. Now it is time to think about the next Premier League game and then it is the Champions League.”
Manchester City captain Vincent Kompany, speaking to Sky Sports: “There was so much emotion in this final. There were so many missed chances and when it get to penalties I think both teams have to be remembered. I am just so happy for the club and so proud.”
Manchester City Manuel Pellegrini, speaking to Sky Sports: “We deserved to win the game, we missed chances but if you asked me which way I’d prefer to win I’d prefer to win it is this way.
“I’d rather lose the title than lose my word. A lot of media were waiting to criticise me if Willy Caballero makes a mistake. I had a lot of trust in Caballero. I am very pleased for all the players and staff but more for him because he deserved it.
“We are working very hard. I don’t remember Willy making one save in the 90 minutes. They draw in the last eight minutes and it was not easy for me to make a change but we finished the better.
“To win a title in Wembley is very special. We are not thinking about what we can win, we are thinking about the next game – against Liverpool – we are nine points behind the leader but we have a game in hand.”
“I had a difficult decision with the FA Cup but I think this title and the win in Kiev support my decision.”
Manchester City striker Sergio Aguero: “I’m very happy for this club – we are here to win trophies and we are happy.
“Liverpool are a good team, difficult. I’m happy for Willy Caballero because he played every game in the competition.”
Liverpool boss Jurgen Klopp, speaking to Sky Sports: “I am disappointed of course with the end. Pleased with a lot of things I saw in the game.
“We tried everything, we scored the goal. We had a big chance with another few situations. It is unlucky but it is one way to lose a cup final.
“Manchester City should not have scored their goal, we had to strike back and we did. We played well in a lot of moments. It doesn’t matter what I say now, it won’t change the result.
“We all have to feel it now. It is was it is. You can fall but it is how you stand up. We cannot change this game now, we have to carry on and we will carry on.”
Written by Alex Batt – @AlexBatt