As Pep Guardiola claims his trophy in English football and Arsene Wenger suffered a third League Cup final defeat, we take a look at the player ratings from the game.
David Ospina: Arsene Wenger stuck with his ‘cup keeper’ here and, although he could do nothing about either goal, he instilled no confidence in his defence. 5 (out of 10)
Calum Chambers: Surprise inclusion given his struggles against Ostersund on Thursday night and he looked nervous throughout here. 5
Laurent Koscielny: Did not make any mistakes as such but not the same sort of on-pitch leader as Vincent Kompany. 5
Shkodran Mustafi: Wanted a foul against Sergio Aguero but was too easily beaten for the opening City goal and never recovered. 5
Hector Bellerin: A supposed transfer target of City in the past, the Spain international was limited to mainly defensive duties. 5
Granit Xhaka: Despite having played in England for 18 months it remains unclear what his best position, or primary role, is and his set-pieces were particularly poor. 5
Aaron Ramsey: Overcame a groin problem to play but could not inspire Arsenal to a shock. 6
Nacho Monreal: Forced off before the half hour mark through injury having had little chance to make an impact. 6
Jack Wilshere: Put in a shift in a wider role than he is accustomed to but a largely frustrating afternoon. 6
Mesut Ozil: Often accused of going missing in big games, the Germany international was again on the periphery for too much of this contest. 5
Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang: Missed a great early chance and still does not appear to be completely match sharp. Handled with relative ease by the City defence. 5
Sead Kolasinac (for Monreal, 26): Seems to wander too easily from his defensive position and, after a strong start, there are increasing questions over his ability. 5
Danny Welbeck (for Chambers, 65): Introduced moments after City had gone three goals ahead and had no chance to stir a memorable comeback. 5
Alex Iwobi (for Ramsey, 72): With Ramsey just back from injury, he was replaced by Iwobi late on but he too struggled to get a foot on the ball. 5
Claudio Bravo: Made an important early save and set up City’s opening goal, although he was never truly convincing. 6
Kyle Walker: Unable to provide his usual attacking threat and had some awkward moments defensively. 6
Vincent Kompany: A vintage display by the skipper – solid, influential and a goal threat in the opposing box. 9
Nicolas Otamendi: Steady display alongside the inspirational Kompany. 7
Danilo: Tested at times as Aubameyang asked some early questions. 6
Ilkay Gundogan: Composed and elegant at the heart of City’s midfield, constantly driving them forward. 7
Fernandinho: Trod a fine line after couple of questionable challenges and left the action early through injury. 6
Leroy Sane: Consistently troubled Arsenal with some tricky runs into the box but end product was lacking. 6
David Silva: His constant probing eventually found a way through the Arsenal back line and his finish was clinical. 7
Kevin De Bruyne: Not at his most effective in a wider position in the first half but Arsenal could not keep him quiet. 7
Sergio Aguero: Found chances hard to come by but worked hard and finished masterfully for the opening goal. 7
Bernardo Silva (for Fernandinho, 52): His arrival allowed De Bruyne to move into the central position vacated by Fernandinho, a move that went a long way to unlocking Arsenal. 6
Gabriel Jesus (for Sane, 77): Got a late taste of the action, ending two months on the sidelines with injury. 6
Phil Foden (for Aguero, 89): Allowed to sample the Wembley atmosphere in the final minute. 5
Goals from Sergio Aguero, Vincent Kompany and David Silva earned Guardiola his first trophy in English football.
Here, we analyse the roles of the two managers.
City coach Guardiola went for a familiar 4-2-3-1 formation, with Kevin de Bruyne pushed forward to wide on the right and Ilkay Gundogan deployed in the centre of midfield due to the continued absence of injured winger Raheem Sterling. Wenger’s selection was perhaps more surprising.
He opted to line up in a 3-4-2-1 system which had not be used since they suffered a disappointing 2-1 defeat at Bournemouth six weeks ago. However, with Henrik Mkhitaryan cup-tied, it was perhaps the only way to accommodate both Jack Wilshere and Granit Xhaka.
City’s opening goal led to a minor disagreement between the two coaches, with fourth official Graham Scott stepping in to cool things down. While it is impossible to know exactly what was said, the disagreement possibly stemmed from Wenger feeling the Gunners should have been awarded a free-kick in the build-up for goal-scorer Aguero’s slight nudge on Arsenal defender Shkodran Mustafi. VAR was available but referee Craig Pawson was happy for the goal to stand.
Spaniard Guardiola continues to have the upper hand over his more experienced rival. He has now won seven of their 13 managerial meetings going back to his days in charge of Barcelona and Bayern Munich, drawing three and losing three. While Guardiola has not lost a league game to Wenger since arriving in English football at the start of last season, Sunday’s success avenges their previous Wembley meeting when City lost 2-1 after extra-time in the FA Cup semi-finals last April.
Having lost defender Nacho Monreal to injury in the first half, Wenger was restricted to just two substitutions as they chased the game in the second half, although he opted to make both after City had gone 3-0 up. Danny Welbeck was waiting to come on when Silva slotted in City’s third but neither he nor Alex Iwobi were able to make much of an impact.
In contrast, City’s three-goal margin meant Guardiola was able to give an early rest to Aguero, bring on Gabriel Jesus for his first appearance since a knee injury, and give 17-year-old Phil Foden a taste of the final. The only sour note for City was an injury to midfielder Fernandinho.
After their shock FA Cup exit to Wigan on Monday, this trophy was the first piece in the jigsaw as City chase a memorable treble and Guardiola will hope it can act as a springboard to spur his team on to further success.
The Premier League title already looks to be in the bag given their 13-point lead at the top, with a first Champions League triumph for the club also on offer.
It is a far more dismal outlook for the Gunners and their manager Wenger. Securing the top-four finish required for Champions League football next season looks unlikely, meaning their sole hope of rescuing something from their season rests on the Europa League.
Provided by Press Association Sport
Pep Guardiola claimed his first trophy in English football as Manchester City powered to a 3-0 win over Arsenal in the Carabao Cup final.
Sergio Aguero set the Premier League leaders on the way to victory with the opening goal before second-half strikes from the outstanding Vincent Kompany and David Silva finished off the Gunners at Wembley.
Here, we analyse Wilshere’s performance for the losers.
Shots – 1
Touches – 56
Passes – 35
Pass Accuracy – 83.3%
Key passes – 1
Dribbles – 5
Dispossessed – 3
30 SECOND REPORT
A one man army for Arsenal. The Englishman was the leading light in Arsene Wenger’s team, and tried to push forward at every opportunity. His form since his return from injury has lifted the gloom that surrounded the Gunners poor form and the transfer of Alexis Sanchez. Has made it clear that he wants to sign a new deal, but given an agreement is no closer, it would be a shame to see the 26-year-old leave North London.
Movement – Battled hard and well in midfield and quickly imposed himself on Fernandinho. His performance only bolsters his hopes of reaching next year’s World Cup.
Fitness – His workrate was superb against City – and along with his fitness and passing repertoire – looks hungry and back to his best.
Defence – Looked sharp in attack, but failed to make any tackles, intercepts or clearances during the 90 minutes. Was also dispossessed three times – as many as every Man City player combined.
Discipline – Was yellow carded for dissent with two minutes remaining, but continued to try and argue with Gabriel Jesus late in the game. Needs to focus on the match instead of being distracted by irrelevant noise.
8th minute (CHANCE) – Wilshere does well to win the ball and slip it to Ozil. The German tees up Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang who sends the ball straight to Claudio Bravo – with an easy goal in sight.
VERDICT – 7/10
Proved during the draw against Chelsea last month that he is as effective as Mesut Ozil, and has taken those fighting qualities which have seen him battle back from injury and is performing to great effect. He is the conductor of the Arsenal engine room and Wenger needs to keep hold of his talisman if the team is to improve going forward.
All statistics are compiled using whoscored.com