Ilkay Gundogan brace sees Manchester City defeat Manchester United to win 2023 FA Cup: Match Report

Published on 4 June 2023 at 12:00

Manchester City have won a second trophy in their pursuit of a legendary treble, dispatching rivals Manchester United 2-1 in the FA Cup final.


It’s the first time the two sides have met in the final of this competition, and having both won silverware already this season, this final was for far more than just being able to call Manchester “red” or “blue” once again. 


The game got off to the perfect start for the Cityzens, as just 13 seconds into the game, captain Ilkay Gundogan connected with a thunderous volley past a statuesque David De Gea, sending the sky blue side of the stadium into euphorics. 


With the opener, Gundogan now holds the record for the fastest goal scored in FA Cup final history, doing so in nearly half the time it took Louis Saha to find the back of the net against Chelsea all the way back in 2009’s final. 

What followed was a half hour of complete City dominance, keeping the Red Devils firmly contained in their own half as the pass counter went up and up for Pep Guardiola’s team.


Man Utd were handed a lifeline through Jack Grealish’s handball off a Wan-Bissaka cross. After a much delayed VAR call to referee Paul Tierney, the harsh call gave Bruno Fernandes the opportunity to level things up. The Portuguese midfielder’s cool penalty sent Stefan Ortega the wrong way, and Man Utd went into halftime with a glimmer of hope. 


Any such hope was swiftly dashed however, as it was that man Gundogan once again putting Man City back in front not long after play resumed. His effort from outside of the box perhaps a tad more fortunate to get past De Gea, in what was turning into a rather torrid afternoon for the Premier League Golden Glove recipient. 

City pushed to extend their lead, with main man Erling Haaland trying to make the best of the rare opportunities being afforded to him but to no avail. Alejandro Garnacho’s cameo looked promising, as he came close to equalising on a number of occasions for Erik ten Hag’s team. 


With one last throw of the dice, the Dutchman had brought on Wout Weghorst and Scott McTominay to bring a tall physical threat in the dying minutes. And it nearly paid off as the latter’s header went just over the bar following a great save by Ortega on an earlier effort. 


The final whistle soon blew, and Pep Guardiola’s Man City had amassed another trophy to their growing collection: the 13th trophy of the manager’s tenure, City are now officially one step closer to realising their footballing destiny and becoming treble winners. Only Inter Milan in Istanbul stand between them and history.

But for now, Manchester is officially ‘blue’ once again, as the well-oiled City machine continues its domestic dominance. Having won both the Premier League and FA Cup final this season, they’ve reserved the right to play in next season’s Community Shield, where they will play Mikel Arteta’s Arsenal. 


Capping off another eventful FA Cup competition, it’s interesting to note that it wasn’t Erling Haaland or even one of his teammates who scooped the ‘top scorer’ title for this season’s competition. Instead it’s Wrexham star Paul Mullin who will be receiving that accolade, as his 8 goals in the competition put him well ahead of the 5 goals scored by 2nd place Riyad Mahrez. 


What were your thoughts on this season’s FA Cup final? Do you think Man Utd’s penalty was the right call? Will Manchester City go on to defeat Inter Milan in the UEFA Champions League final? Let us know what you think in the comments below and on our social media channels today!



Jaspar Shepherdson

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