Two goals from Ilkay Gundogan won the FA Cup for Manchester City which along with the Premier League title completed a double for the club. The focus for Pep Guardiola’s side now goes on to win the treble which they can do if they defeat Inter Milan in the Champions League final next Saturday.
Manchester United are the only English team to have ever won the treble, which they did in 1999. Eric ten Hag‘s side had the chance to stop City doing it but they ultimately came up short. It did not help that Gundogan got his side off to a perfect start when he volleyed in after just 12 seconds. This was the fastest-ever FA Cup final goal and United were stunned.
Guardiola’s side were cruising until Jack Grealish‘s fingertips flicked onto the ball in the penalty area. VAR spotted it and the Paul Tierney awarded it. Bruno Fernandes sent Stefan Ortega the wrong way and slotted in the equaliser.
Much of the talk before the game was on how United would stop Erling Haaland. However, as often happens when they solely focus on stopping the Norwegian, they forget about their other star players. Gundogen scored again from outside the box to give City the lead.
United could not get back into it, although they came very close to an equaliser through substitute Scott McTominay. His effort was cleared off the line by John Stones. The first Manchester derby in an FA Cup final ended in a win for the blue half of the city.
It was a credit to City that they got the job done despite everything that went against them. Not just the soft penalty that was awarded but there was a bad challenge from Casemiro on Manuel Akanji and City should have had a penalty when Fred fouled Kevin De Bruyne in the box.
The match winner, Gundogan, reflected on his wonder goal which gave City the early lead to ITV saying “The ball landed perfectly for me and I hit it first time… It was an amazing finish!”
Grealish was overjoyed about the result and told the BBC “We’ll have a good night tonight and then straight back at it on Sunday and Monday for a big game next week.”
If City do not win the treble then despite everything they have achieved this season it will be a huge disappointment. The Champions League is the only trophy that eludes Guardiola’s side and one that they must win if they are to be regarded as up there with the greatest teams of all time.
Manchester City go on to face Inter Milan in the final of the Champions League on Saturday, June 10, kick-off at 20:00.
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