City outclass United in Manchester Derby to reach League Cup final
|MANCHESTER UNITED||MANCHESTER CITY|
|(John Stones 50, Fernandinho 83)|
Manchester City reached their fourth straight League Cup final as second-half goals from John Stones and Fernandinho gave Pep Guardiola’s side a 2-0 win over Manchester United in their semi-final at Old Trafford on Thursday morning (Jan 7, Singapore time).
City will meet Jose Mourinho’s Tottenham Hotspur at Wembley in the April 25 final as they seek their fourth League Cup trophy in as many years.
In a frantic opening to the game, both teams had efforts ruled out for offside with Stones turning the ball into his own net but being saved by the flag and Ilkay Guendogan converting a low ball in from Phil Foden but, again, the attempt was rightly ruled out.
Kevin de Bruyne struck the post with a thundering drive from outside the box before Foden also put the ball in the net for City but the visitors were foiled by offside once again.
It was an open and entertaining game with City looking sharper but United competitive as they sought revenge for last year’s defeat by their neighbours at the same stage of the competition.
City went ahead five minutes after the break when Foden whipped in a free-kick from the left through a crowded box and defender Stones bundled a cross home at the back post, the ball going in off his thigh.
United goalkeeper Dean Henderson produced a brilliant save to tip over a strike from Riyad Mahrez, after the Algerian had burst forward from the halfway line.
Fernandinho made sure of the win seven minutes from time with a stunning volley as he pounced on a headed clearance from Aaron Wan-Bissaka.
United have now lost at the semi-final stage in their last four Cup campaigns, leaving manager Ole Gunnar Solskjaer still searching for his first final since taking over at the club.
“It’s not psychological, sometimes you meet good teams in the semis,” said Solskjaer.
“We met the best team in England and for me we didn’t have enough today.
“But we’re getting closer. This is a much better Manchester United compared to a year ago in those semis, that’s positive but not enough.” – AFP, REUTERS