Man United stun Man City in FA Cup final

Man United stun Man City in FA Cup final

LONDON – Nobody would have expected it, but they believed in themselves and did the unthinkable.

Manchester United were huge underdogs, especially after an eighth-placed finish in the English Premier League, and few gave them a chance against the mighty Manchester City in the FA Cup final at Wembley on May 25.

However, Erik ten Hag’s men stunned everyone – perhaps even themselves – when they won 2-1, denying their rivals becoming the first English club to win the domestic double in successive seasons.

Pep Guardiola’s City, who won the treble last campaign and made history in May by winning the Premier League for an unprecedented fourth straight year, lost to their neighbours this time following their 2-1 triumph last term.

City started on the front foot when hotshot Erling Haaland went down in the box in the first minute after a challenge by United defender Lisandro Martinez, but the referee waved away the penalty appeals and the VAR (video assistant referee) did not intervene as well.

United did not sit back and winger Alejandro Garnacho produced the first big chance when he struck from the edge of the box in the ninth minute, as City goalkeeper Stefan Ortega pulled off a good save.

As both teams settled into the game, it was unsurprisingly City who had more possession of the ball and dictated play, while ten Hag’s side remained patient for a chance to launch a counter-attack.

However, Guardiola looked concerned on the touchline as his players’ passing was not as slick as usual, and they paid the price for it at the half-hour mark when United broke the deadlock.

A mix-up between City defender Josko Gvardiol and Ortega gifted the Red Devils a perfect opportunity to score, and Garnacho made no mistake by slotting the back into the back of an empty net.

It was 2-0 just less than 10 minutes later when United captain Bruno Fernandes played a neat through ball in the box and found Kobbie Mainoo, this season’s breakout star midfielder.

The 19-year-old, who usually exudes a calm demeanour, fired a close-range shot into the bottom right corner in the biggest game of his career so far as ten Hag cheered.

According to Opta statistics, United are the first team to have two different teenagers – Garnacho is also 19 – scoring in the FA Cup final.

Guardiola brought on pacey winger Jeremy Doku for the second half and he made an immediate impact.

The Belgian played an accurate pass into the box in the 55th minute but Haaland narrowly missed with a shot that crashed against the crossbar.

At this point, City had already upped the intensity and United goalkeeper Andre Onana was forced to make a reflex save just four minutes later, when Kyle Walker unleashed a strike from outside the box.

In the 64th minute, Julian Alvarez was presented with a chance but the forward could not find the target as his effort went just wide of the left post.

City had another penalty appeal turned down in the 75th minute when Haaland again went down in the box.

Guardiola continued to cut a frustrated figure as his men tried all ways to get back into the game, and was finally rewarded when Doku pulled a goal back in the 87th minute.

But it was too little, too late.

In the end, City’s below-par performance cost them dearly. But nothing should be taken away from United, who turned up on the day and defied the odds.

OTHER NEWS

18 minutes ago

High blood pressure during pregnancy has doubled, but only 60% are treated, study finds

18 minutes ago

18-year-old rescue dog teaches kids about adoption through children's book

18 minutes ago

Nashville court grapples with details on school shooter that were leaked to media

19 minutes ago

Is America ready for warning labels on its gas stoves?

19 minutes ago

24 Hours of Le Mans Photo Gallery

19 minutes ago

Orlando Pirates CLEAN-OUT: 13 player linked with exits! – Full list

19 minutes ago

ATP Rankings: Alex de Minaur and Jack Draper reach milestones, Andy Murray -32, Matteo Berrettini +30

19 minutes ago

Mercedes warned Spanish GP ‘ultimate test of their progress’ after Canada surge

19 minutes ago

Jacob Zuma slams the IEC for how it handled evidence the MKP brought to it

19 minutes ago

Dear Richard Madeley: My wife is now deaf and I miss our previous conversations – what should I do?

19 minutes ago

Reminder: World Rugby rankings ahead of Springboks v Wales Test

19 minutes ago

Shop the Ninja Woodfire Electric BBQ for £100 less today and receive a FREE stand and cover (shoppers say it's 'the best BBQ ever')

19 minutes ago

When is the Premier League 2024-25 schedule released? Fixture announcement date and time, including season start date, international breaks and final day for upcoming season

19 minutes ago

Kevin De Bruyne to score from outside the box BOOSTED to 9/1 as Belgium kick start their Euro 2024 campaign against Slovakia in Frankfurt

23 minutes ago

Blood, sweat and cheers - Paris to welcome kayak cross

24 minutes ago

King Charles and Queen Camilla to attend historical Garter Day ceremony

25 minutes ago

Locals slam council after million-pound pavement fixed with tar blob

25 minutes ago

Pole position and three wins: Historic weekend for BMW Motorrad Motorsport and new world championship leader Toprak Razgatlioglu at Misano

25 minutes ago

Grant Shapps drops election bombshell - it is 'unlikely' Tories will win

25 minutes ago

Napoli and Khvicha Kvaratskhelia go public with explosive war of words 'after €100m bid rejected'

25 minutes ago

Treasury yields tick higher as traders assess timeline of interest rate cuts

25 minutes ago

Local cyclist from Team USA leads Juneteenth celebration

29 minutes ago

Serbia v England: Jude Bellingham strikes as Three Lions edge to victory at Euro 2024

29 minutes ago

Tunnel 194m underground where 50 men died opens as water sports attraction

29 minutes ago

Micah Richards fumes at Gareth Southgate over England decision that fans don't agree with

29 minutes ago

"Better Than Romo": Tom Brady Charms Football World in First FOX Booth Role Just Days After Jersey Retirement Feat

29 minutes ago

Jeff Van Gundy thankful to Celtics for giving him a 'lifeline' after ESPN firing: "I was not in a great place"

29 minutes ago

Lockheed Martin Gives Thumbs Up to 1 Tiny Space Stock

30 minutes ago

Byoma’s £18 retinol oil is one of the best budget retinols out there

30 minutes ago

Pubs disappearing from communities at a rate of 80 every month, reveals new data

30 minutes ago

Great news for Gray: Leeds eyeing up "unbelievable" first signing

30 minutes ago

Biden's reelection team launches $50 million ad campaign targeting Trump before the first debate

30 minutes ago

Brumbies star to snub Wallabies to chase Olympic sevens dream – report

30 minutes ago

Two-child cap to hit extra 670,000 children in next five years, thinktank warns

30 minutes ago

What Forest's starting XI could look like after 77m spending spree

30 minutes ago

Jamie Carragher says England star's display vs Serbia was 'deeply worrying'

30 minutes ago

Piers Morgan & Jerry Springer Shows Feature In UK Regulator’s Most Complained About Of All Time

34 minutes ago

Benjamin Netanyahu dissolves Israeli war cabinet

34 minutes ago

North Carolina Supreme Court Secretly Squashed Discipline of Two GOP Judges Who Admitted to Violating Judicial Code

35 minutes ago

Pauline Hanson responds to Irwin threat