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February 28, 2010 3:00 PM GMT
5′ (PG) James Milner
Michael Owen 12′
Wayne Rooney 74′
90′ +4
FULL-TIME. MANCHESTER UNITED ARE THE 2010 CARLING CUP WINNERS! Wayne Rooney the hero after coming off the bench to head home the winner. A fantastic match with both sides having plenty of chances. United were the better side in the second half and deservedly retain the trophy. Aston Villa 1-2 Manchester United. Thanks for joining me today.
90′ +3
The ball is played down the line to Richard Dunne on the right wing, who is nowhere near being in an offside position, and for some reason the linesman gives a free-kick for an offside against the Irishman.
90′ +2
Valencia picks up the ball on the egde of the United penalty area and runs the length of the pitch before firing towards the near post but his effort is off target and smashes against the side netting.
DUNNE! SO CLOSE TO AN EQUALISER!! Villa pile players forward and the ball finds Downing in the United penalty area and he clips a left-footed cross to Richard Dunne at the far post but he can only header wide from an awkward angle. Four minutes of added time.
Darron Gibson comes on to replace Park Ji-Sung now for United. The Irishman will play in the centre of midfield alongside Carrick and Fletcher. Rooney and Valencia will play on either wing with Berbatov now playing as a lone striker.
Excellent play from Valencia. The right-winger cuts inside from the right and gets past Collins before laying the ball off to Berbatov at the far post but the Bulgarian smashes the ball well over the crossbar. It must have taken a bobble because it was a terrible effort.
Substitution Ji-Sung Park Darron Gibson
Rooney skips away down the left wing before curling a low cross into the centre with the outside of his boot but Collins is there to clear the ball down field.
GREAT CHANCE FOR VILLA!! Downing curls in an excellent inswinging cross from the right wing into the six-yard box and James Collins heads the ball down off the back of Nemanja Vidic, and the ball then deflects up onto the crossbar and over after Tomasz Kuszcak got his fingertips to it.
Substitution Carlos Javier Cuéllar John Alieu Carew
A change for Villa. John Carew has come on to replace Carlos Cuellar. The big Noweigan will line up in attack alongside Emile Heskey and it looks as though Milner could play at right-back now.
ROONEY HEADS AGAINST THE POST NOW!! In a similar move to the goal moments ago, Valencia clips the ball to Rooney at the far post and he moves away from Cuellar to head the ball down toward the bottom left-hand corner, but the ball strikes the inside of the post and rolls clear.
United go close again as Valencia receives a pass on the right wing before driving the ball towards Berbatov at the near post but the ball is too close to Friedel, who collects the ball ahead of the Bulgarian.
Goal Wayne Rooney
GOAL!! WAYNE ROONEY HEADS IN WHAT COULD BE THE WINNER FOR UNITED!! Valencia plays an excellent one-two with Berbatov, who back-heels the ball back to the Ecuador international, before clipping the ball into the penalty area to Wayne Rooney, who espcapes his marker James Collins, to header the ball into the top right-hand corner. Excellent power on the header from Rooney and United take the lead!
Half-chance for Aston Villa. The ball falls to Ashley Young just inside the United penalty area, after the Red Devils failed to clear, and he strikes the ball right-footed downwards against the ground before the ball bounces just wide of the post.
Vidic is now booked for United for hacking into the back of Agbonlahor's legs in the Villa left wing position. Young's delivery from the resulting free-kick is decent but no Villa players are there to connect with the ball and Kuszczak easily collects the ball.
Yellow Card Nemanja Vidic
Petrov now looks injured after Park strikes the ball into the back of the Bulgarian. The Villa skipper receives medical treatment and looks as though he will be alright to continue.
Substitution Rafael Silva Gary Neville
Rafael looks as though he is suffering from cramp and has had to be replaced by Gary Neville.
Warnock plays the ball through the legs of Wayne Rooney to Stewart Downing on the left wing, he then whips in a cross towards the far post but the cross is overhit and flies well wide over everybody.
Park finds Rooney just inside the Villa area and the United forward turns his marker James Collins before attempting to curl the ball into the top right-hand corner but his effort is poor and flies high and wide.
Evra combines with Park down the left wing before swinging in a high left-footed towards the near post but there isn't a United player in sight and Friedel easily picks the ball out the air before clearing the ball.
Park is having a good game for United. The South Korean is playing on the left wing but keeps cutting inside to make a three man midfield in the centre when Villa are attacking. He is also providing a threat going forward and is always looking to support Rooney and Berbatov up front at every opportunity.
Half-chance for Villa. Heskey does well to hold off the challenge of Evra to lay the ball off to Ashley Young on the right wing, who then brilliantly plays the ball round Fletcher before racing round the other side of him. The winger then looks up and drives the ball towards Agbonlahor in the centre but Vidic gets in front of him to smash the ball clear.
Park clips a ball into the Berbatov just inside the Villa penalty area and he lays the ball off to Rooney, but Dunne is there to block a possible shooting opportunity for the England striker, who is forced wide and Collins eventually challenges him to clear.
Agbonlahor races away down the left wing and clips in a cross to the far post and the ball looks at one stage as if it could loop over Kuszczak into the far corner but the ball goes just over. Good effort, even if it was a fluke.
GREAT SAVE FOM BRAD FRIEDEL! Park plays the ball to Berbatov on the egde of the Villa area and he flicks a wonderful back-heel into the path of Carrick, who takes a touch to steady himself before firing towards the far corner but Friedel dives at full stretch to push the ball wide. Brilliant goalkeeping.
Manchester United get us underway for the second half. No changes for either side at the break.
45′ +4
Half-time. Villa took the lead through Milner's penalty after Vidic pulled down Agbonlahor in the area before Owen equalised for United. Park went close on the stroke of half-time but it's all still to play for at Wembley.
45′ +3
PARK STRIKES THE POST FOR UNITED! SO CLOSE! Valencia skips past Warnock on the right wing for United before driving the ball across goal, Collins is at the near post but can only clear the ball into the path of Park just inside the Villa area, and he strikes the ball low right-footed off the inside of Friedel left-hand post.
Agbonlahor and Ashley Young combine on the left wing to set Young on his way past Vidic but the Serbian strongly holds off the challenge and allows the ball to roll through to the goalkeeper. It looks as though Young dives whilst chasing Vidic but it appears he accidently clips the heels of the United centre-back.
First change of the game for Manchester United. It's Michael Owen who has to come off after it appears he picked up an injury trying to latch onto Berbatov's flick on moments ago. 27-goal Wayne Rooney comes on to replace him.
Substitution Michael Owen Wayne Rooney
Yellow Card Patrice Evra
CLAIMS FOR A UNITED PENALTY! REFEREE PHIL DOWD SAYS NO!! Rafael whips in a cross from the right and the ball strikes the arm of Milner in the penalty area but the referee says the ball struck the chest of the England man. Meanwhile, Evra receives a booking after lunging into Ashley Young as the winger looked to skip past him.
Excellent tackle from Stephen Warnock. Valencia chases after a through ball on the right wing but the Villa left-back keeps up with the Ecuadorian to put in a brilliantly timed slide tackle to clear the ball out of play.
After a number of passes the ball finds Valencia on the right wing and he cuts back to curl in an inviting left-footed cross towards the near post. Berbatov looks to latch onto it but Friedel races out of goal to claim the ball.
A good passing move from Manchester United results in Fletcher whipping in a right-footed cross from the right wing and Owen flicks the ball towards Berbatov on the penalty spot but the flick on flies over the Bulgarian and Cuellar breaks with the ball.
As Evra looks to skip past Cuellar on the left wing, the Spaniard brings the United player down with a clumsy block. The Frenchman initially looks like he is seriously injured but quickly gets on his feet and returns to play.
Half-chance for Milner. Ashley Young's ball into the area is headed away by Evans but only to Cuellar at the far post, and he chests the ball down before passing the ball to Downing to his left. The left-winger looks to shoot but can't find the space and eventually lays the ball off to Milner on the edge of the box but he can only curl the ball right-footed wide of the far post.
Ashley Young curls in a free-kick from the left wing and after a scramble in the penalty area, the ball breaks to Heskey, who turns before firing at goal from six yards, but he doesn't make clean contact with the ball and is easy for the goalkeeper to deal with.
Terrific play from Park Ji-Sung. The South Korea international dribbles through the centre of the pitch after racing past Petrov, and plays a one-two with Valencia on the right side of the Villa area but his shot from the return pass is blocked and Villa clear the danger.
Owen finds Park midway into the Villa half and he tries to put Berbatov through on goal with a clever through ball but Friedel rushes out of his goal to claim the ball, but Bulgarian is offside anyway. The first sign of danger in behind the Villa defence though for United.
Park cuts inside from the left and plays the ball to Berbatov inside the area, who brilliantly back-heels the ball back to the South Korean, but he fluffs his lines and scuff the ball right-footed wide of the post.
Yellow Card Stewart Downing
Yellow card for Stewart Downing. Patrice Evra races down the left wing as Downing looks to slide the ball out of play, he mis-times his challenge and slides straight into the legs of the Frenchman to deservedly earn a booking.
Great chance for Aston Villa! Milner drifts inside from the right wing past Jonny Evans and unleashes a fierce left-footed striker towards the far corner but Kuszczak does well to palm the ball away. The ball is not cleared by United and falls to Agbonlahor but he slices his left-footed striker across goal and the ball goes out for a goal kick.
GOAL! OWEN SCORES THE EQUALISER FOR UNITED!! Richard Dunne is dispossessed by Dimitar Berbatov midway in the Villa half and the Bulgarian races into the area with Dunne in hot pursuit before the Irishman puts in an excellent sliding tackle to take the ball away from Berbatov. Only the ball falls to Michael Owen just inside the Villa area to slot the ball right-footed into the far corner. United are back in it!!
Goal Michael Owen
Yellow Card James Collins
Michael Owen uses his pace to take the ball past Carlos Cuellar on the left wing and as he looks to continue his run, James Colling comes across from centre-back to clatter into the former England international and bring him down. The Welshman is promptly booked by Phil Dowd.
Ashley Young beats Park Ji-Sung on the right wing before driving in a low right-footed cross into a crowded penalty area, but Jonny Evans is there at the near post to smash the ball away.
Villa are looking to find Milner at every opportunity. The former Newcastle midfielder has had a fantastic season and looks like the biggest threat for Villa going forward.
Penalty Goal James Milner
GOAL! VILLA TAKE THE LEAD!! Milner steps up and casually converts the ball into the bottom right-hand corner to send Kuszczak the wrong way. Great start for Villa!
PENALTY FOR VILLA!!! Agbonlahor races past Vidic after long ball down field and the Serbian tugs at the Villa striker's shirt in the area before bringing him down to concede a penalty. Correct decision from referee Phil Dowd. Big chance for Aston Villa now!
Aston Villa get the 2010 Carling Cup final underway here at Wembley.
Amazingly, Wayne Rooney starts on the bench. Manchester United line up: Kuszczak; Rafael, Vidic, Evans, Evra; Valencia, Fletcher, Carrick, Park; Owen, Berbatov. Subs: Foster, Neville, Brown, Rooney, Scholes, Gibson, Diouf.
Here is the team news. Martin O’Neill opts for Brad Friedel ahead of Brad Guzan in goal and his side line up: Friedel; Cuellar, Collins, Dunne, Warnock; Ashley Young, Milner, Petrov, Downing; Heskey, Agbonlahor. Subs: Guzan, Luke Young, Sidwell, Carew, Delfouneso, Delph, Beye.
Villa are yet to play at the new Wembley Stadium since it opened in 2007 but Manchester United have already made six appearances there. However, Sir Alex Ferguson’s side have scored just three goals at the stadium, and their last five appearances have all been settled on penalties.
In recent years, Crewe Alexandra have run the Red Devils close in the Carling Cup, and Southend United and Coventry City have even knocked out the Premier League champions. Upsets were avoided this year as wins over Wolverhampton Wanderers, Barnsley, Tottenham Hotspur and rivals Manchester City secured progression to today’s final.
Manchester United seem to have a habit of coming good in the big games and they have won six of their last eight matches, including impressive victories over Manchester City, Arsenal and AC Milan.
Martin O’Neill’s side overcame Cardiff City, Sunderland, Portsmouth and finally Blackburn Rovers to reach the final. Today is Villa’s first cup final since 2000, where they lost 1-0 to Chelsea in the last FA Cup final to be played at the old Wembley.
Aston Villa come into the game as underdogs but have been in terrific form recently. They currently lie seventh in the Premier League, are unbeaten in their last 12 matches and are yet to lose in 2010. They boast the meanest defence in the top flight, having conceded just 21 goals in 16 games.
Good afternoon and welcome to Goal.com’s live coverage of the Carling Cup final between Aston Villa and Manchester United. My name is Danny Hart and I will be taking you through today’s match.
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