London - Manchester
City rolled back the years on Sunday to win the first trophy of the Pep
Guardiola era with three of their veteran players scoring in an
emphatic 3-0 win against Arsenal at Wembley.
Vincent Kompany and David Silva were all on the scoresheet as City
lifted the trophy for the fifth time - only Liverpool have won it more.
was an impressive statement of intent from Guardiola's men after a
shock FA Cup defeat to lowly Wigan last week ended their bid for an
"It was a difficult game, but as much
space there was for us and Arsenal, we did well and controlled the space
and I am proud of the team," said Kompany. "Winning 3-0 at Wembley is a
massive result against any opponent.
"Before the game, I thought I
was going to score. I came close during the game so there was some luck
on the day, but also self-belief."
City opened the scoring in the
18th minute when a long punt upfield from goalkeeper Claudio Bravo was
controlled by Sergio Aguero, who coolly lifted the ball over a helpless
David Ospina in the Arsenal goal.
Captain Kompany doubled the lead
in the second half with just over half an hour to go and Silva put the
game out of the reach of Arsene Wenger's team.
Premier League leaders will be hoping to use the victory as a
springboard to greater glory as the season approaches its final stretch
but defeat for Wenger means he has never lifted the League Cup.
a bitterly cold, clear day in London, City, in their light blue kit,
took control early, playing measured football and enjoying the lion's
share of possession against a side who have made Wembley a second home
in recent years.
But Arsenal went closest to taking the lead
within the first 10 minutes, with new signing Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang
seeing his scuffed shot saved by a sprawling Bravo.
Seconds later Aguero found the side netting after an incisive break from City, who looked short of their fluent best.
it was Aguero who broke the deadlock, controlling the ball as Arsenal's
defence failed to deal with the danger, silencing the boisterous
The Argentine striker has scored in each of his past
five games in all competitions against Arsenal and this was his 199th
goal in City colours.
It was an unusual goal for Guardiola's team,
who have been lauded for their silky passing game this season, which
has already seen them hailed as one of the finest sides in Premier
City made a bright
start to the second half and captain Kompany was in the right place to
steer home Ilkay Gundogan's shot from the edge of the box after a Kevin
De Bruyne corner in the 58th minute.
It was no more than City deserved against a lacklustre Arsenal and the Belgian celebrated wildly in front of his own fans.
seven minutes later Arsenal were left with a mountain to climb when
Silva smashed the ball past Ospina into the far corner of the net to
make it 3-0.
Former Barcelona and Bayern Munich boss Guardiola
kept faith with reserve goalkeeper Bravo for the Wembley showpiece ahead
of first-choice Ederson. Bravo has played in every round of the
competition so far.
Wenger also played his number two between the sticks, fielding Ospina ahead of Petr Cech.
look nailed on to win the Premier League and have virtually guaranteed a
place in the Champions League quarter-finals after a 4-0 first win in
the first leg of their last-16 tie against Basel.