One trophy Arsenal manager, Arsene Wenger is yet to win in England is the Carling Cup, now named the Carabao Cup in modern times. The last time Wenger managed his Arsenal team in the Final of the Carling Cup, the Gunners were unfortunate losers – conceding a late goal in added time due to a miscommunication between Ex-Arsenal goalkeeper Szczesny and Koscielny.
The Gunners had a Carabao Cup final against league leaders Manchester City at Wembley, which the team from London lost 3-0 to their opposition; as they were outplayed, outclassed and out-passioned by the team from Manchester. David Ospina, Hector Bellerin, Calum Chambers, Shkodran Mustafi, Laurent Koscielny, Nacho Monreal, Granit Xhaka, Aaron Ramsey, Jack Wilshere, Mesut Ozil and Pierre-Emrick Aubameyang made the Starting XI.
The Gunners looked almost certain to have scored in just the 8th minute, when Ramsey played Mesut Ozil in down the right and his low cross was diverted by an incoming Kyle Walker, with Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang unable to steer home the rebound.
It took until the 19th minute before the first goal of the match was recorded, and no other player than Sergio Aguero – courtesy of a shambolic piece of schoolboy defending by a World Cup winner in Shkodran Mustafi. A goal kick clearance from Claudio Bravo was well guided by Aguero, preventing the German international from heading the ball which he claimed foul, but it wasn’t; with the Argentine international breaking free from the Gunners defence and lobbed the ball exquisitely into the net of David Ospina.
Nacho Monreal had to be withdrawn from the match following an injury that I do hope isn’t serious, as he was replaced by Sead Kolasinac. Vincent Kompany did well to snuff out a real scoring opportunity for the Gunners when Aubameyang looked like he had broken City’s high-line but the Belgian matched the Gabon international with pace before outmuscling his opponent.
The league leaders doubled their lead in the 58th minute from a well-worked corner kick, to fully put them in the driving seat of the final. A short corner was taken by Kevin De Bruyne, into the strides of Gundogan who delivered a low cross into a packed penalty area – with Kompany reacting quickest to divert the ball away from Ospina and into the net.
In the 65th minute, David Silva rounded off a nice City move, as they buried the game beyond the reach of the Gunners. David Silva found space on the left-hand side of the pitch, before belting a well placed angled finish, low past Ospina and into the far corner to seal things for his team.
Arsenal was left toothless with 15 minutes to go, as they barely forced any move to threaten the City defenders, showing no fight and passion in a Cup final. Perhaps, the only player on the Arsenal side who played with a bit of dignity showing fight and determination was Jack Wilshere, but one man can’t make up a whole team.
It was a very disappointing performance from the North London outfitters, who are having a season to forget, with division amongst the fan base and amongst players and a section of the Arsenal fan base. Things need to get back to normal ways for the Gunners, with Wenger looking like he’s tearing down labours of his hard-work and fans not trusting his tactics no more. Who would be Arsenal’s saviour?