Manchester City have won the 2023 FA Cup final by defeating their rivals Manchester United 2-1 in the finals. They have now secured the domestic double, having also won the Premier League title this season. And now, they are only one victory away from achieving an iconic treble-winning season.
Manchester United, on the other hand, will be disappointed to have not capitalised on their opportunities. Erik Ten Hag’s men fought hard until the end, but were unable to come away with a win against their noisy neighbours. Here are the three key talking points from the final.
2023 FA Cup Final – Manchester City secure domestic double
Ilkay Gundogan puts up captain’s performance
The German midfielder scored the fastest goal in an FA Cup final, within the very first minute. He launched a volley that caught David De Gea wrong footed, and put his team ahead as early as possible in the game.
He also scored the second goal in the 51st minute to overcome the equaliser scored by Bruno Fernandes, and that proved to be the difference maker for the Sky Blues. Gundogan was named the man of the match for having scored a brace and having put in a remarkable performance overall.
The Germany international could have had a hat-trick as well. But, his effort was ruled out for offside. He has been linked with a move away from Manchester City this summer, and if this is the end of his spell, he is truly going out in remarkable fashion and is leaving a legacy as one of the top midfielders to have played for the club.
Manchester United come up short against their rivals
Some will argue as to whether the penalty Manchester United received was too soft or not. But it was converted by Bruno Fernandes to set them at par once again. However, they were not able to build on the second opportunity.
Alejandro Garnacho in particular provided a bright spark after coming off the bench. The youngster came very close to levelling the score once again, but his effort went narrowly wide. Marcus Rashford was effectively marked out of the game, with very few contributions from the prolific forward.
The same can be said for Jadon Sancho, who was anonymous throughout. United have now lost four of their last five FA Cup finals, and have set the record for losing the most FA Cup finals in history at nine.
The treble is on
Pep Guardiola’s usage of John Stones in a hybrid role has proved to be a total game changer. The Catalonian has stuck to his new, unique system, which has yielded him some incredible results. Inter have a lot to worry about given the form and the squad quality that Manchester City are bringing to the Champions League final. The Premier League champions are by far the favourites, and seem set to lift the trophy at long last.
Inter have been impressive in the Champions League run, but to overcome a Guardiola team that knows nothing other than to win right now – seems too much to ask.