Manchester United 1 Juan Mata 54′
Manchester City 0
EFL Cup | Old Trafford | Attendance: 74,196 | Scorer: Mata 54′
Manchester United beat noisy neighbors 1–0 at Old Trafford to cheer me up a little after a destructive 4–0 embarrassment at Stamford Bridge in West London last Sunday. Smallish Spanish spoiler, Juan Mata’s second-half strike proved enough to book Manchester United’s place in the EFL Cup quarter-finals with victory over holders Manchester City in the Theater of Dreams.
Mata’s intelligent finishing soon after the break ensured United’s revenge for last month’s defeat to City in the Premier League by taking the bragging rights in a lively 173rd Manchester derby on United’s home turf.
United is yet to discover their EFL opponents but once the draw for the last eight of the competition is made, we’ll know. Meanwhile, let’s celebrate the beating of our noisy neighbors on Wednesday night football.
Possession: United 52% City 48%
Shots: United 3 City 2
Shots on target: United 0 United 0
Corners: United 3 City 1
I must admit that when Sergio Aguero walked on to the field of play in place of Nolito I was scared because the Argentine is a wonder kid on the block. With Aguero, City pursued an equalizer in the closing stages but the closest they got was when Aleksandar Kolarov, who replaced Vincent Kompany at half-time for the visitors, fired a free-kick over the crossbar from 25 yards.
Though Paul Pogba didn’t score he impressed me a little today – showing some of the stuff which was why Jose Mourinho spent so much to bring him back to Old Trafford. Pogba almost scored when he raced through the middle from Carrick’s pass but City’s Caballero was alert to the danger.
Possession: United 48% City 52%
Shots: United 8 City 5
Shots on target: United 2 United 0
Corners: United 4 City 3
United: De Gea; Valencia, Blind, Rojo, Shaw; Carrick (c), Herrera; Mata (Schneiderlin 73), Pogba, Rashford (Lingard 81); Ibrahimovic. Subs not used: Romero, Darmian, Young, Fellaini, Memphis.
Booked: Valencia, Pogba, Ibrahimovic
City: Caballero; Maffeo, Otamendi, Kompany (c) (Kolarov 45), Clichy; Fernando, Garcia; Nolito (Aguero 71), Navas, Sane (Sterling 63); Iheanacho. Subs not used: Gunn, Adarabioyo, Gundogan, Fernandinho.
Manchester United beat our noisy neighbors, Manchester City, and I loved it. Those people make a lot of noise in the City of Manchester. Though the EFL Cup match ended at a miserly 1–0, Manchester United players made my Wednesday . . .
Up Man U!