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England - FA Cup
April 16, 2011
• Wembley Stadium, London
Referee: M. Dean
• Attendance: 86549
Y. Touré 52'
United fans will be absolutely gutted as the treble slips away from their fingers in such a narrow defeat of their bitter rivals. City meanwhile will be hoping to emulate such a performance come the final next month and get their first trophy in 35 years. But, for now, that’s all from Goal.com UK and we hope you enjoyed our live commentary of this FA Cup semi-final and hope to see you soon. For now good-bye.
Jubilation on the pitch for the Blues, but soon turns to unfriendly as Ferdinand and Balotelli seemingly have an unpleasant interchange as the final whistle rings out around Wembley. The mess soon disperses and the City players begins to properly celebrate in front of the travelling fans in shared happiness.
And that’s it! City go through to the final!!
90' + 4'
Long balls seem to be United’s only option now, but they aren’t finding anyone as the Reds fans look on in anguish and frustration.
90' + 2'
A scramble on the six-yard line between Yaya Toure and Van der Sar leaves both sets of fans gasping for air as the game enters its concluding moments. Anything can happen, but United don’t look to be doing themselves any favours in getting the equaliser.
United’s fans are charging them on when they get the ball in the middle, but they just can’t make anything with the precious possession they are given. Five minutes of added time.
Patrick Viera is imminent as the Frenchman gets some last minute instructions from Mancini. The former Arsenal man replaces Spaniard Silva who has put in another gracious display. The Italian manager seems to be looking to restrict United’s movement in the middle as the minutes fade away.
It’s not looking good for United. City are dogged in their defending and aren’t letting anybody through the channels and are often getting all 11 men behind the ball, but are still looking for second when pushing on United’s own defenders.
Fabio Da Silva
Yellow Card Vincent Kompany
Hernandez tenaciously works his way into the box to try and get a shot on goal, but his effort is blocked and the ball finds its way to Nani who lays it off onto O’Shea. The Irishman crosses the ball high and long towards Park, but the South Korean’s header can’t test Hart.
One of those opportunities arises in the form of a corner. The set-piece comes in and finds Carrick and the midfielder curls the ball with his left, but the effort goes safely into Hart’s grasp and the former West Ham player can’t make up for his earlier mistake with an equaliser.
City taking their time now with the ball as they casually build up play and look for a second to secure the victory. Sir Alex’s men need to find their heads to get back in this game and look for every chance possible.
Yellow Card Nigel De Jong
And it’s a red card for Paul Scholes. A high challenge on Zabaleta finds him getting his foot way over the ball that the City defender manages to get to first and the midfielder harshly puts his studs straight into the Argentinian’s thigh and makes things worse for the Red side of Manchester.
Red Card Paul Scholes
United are struggling now to find any decent chances whilst City find themselves with most of the ball. The Red Devils have the risk of getting frustrated as we enter the final 20 minutes of the game.
Yellow Card Mario Balotelli
A free-kick on the edge of the City area for United after a cynical tackle on Park from Zabaleta which gets the South American a booking. Nani takes and forces Hart to save with the ball heading for the top of the goal. The replays show a deflection from Balotelli which made the save even harder for the England number one.
Javier 'Chicharito' Hernandez
Yellow Card Pablo Zabaleta
Balotelli’s presence is definitely paying off as City win another corner. Johnson takes short to Silva who returns the ball back and the English winger comes inside to win a successive set-piece. Yaya Toure wins a third with his strength forcing Vidic to kick it out at the by-line. Lescott meets the latest offering from the corner, but only manages to head wide.
Such a punishing goal it was against United and seems to be typical of them to concede in this way. City’s pressing midfield seems to be doing its job as the game develops and the Citizens look to be knocking on the door once more as they push Sir Alex’s team harder and harder.
The game has definitely stepped up as a result of the opening goal. Both sides now scrapping for possession and United have their players on the bench initiating their warm-ups on the side-lines.
And City take the lead!!!!! An error from Carrick puts the ball in the path of a chasing Yaya Toure who storms through the United defence and into the area to slot the ball past Van der Sar and what could be a very important goal for City.
Goal Yaya Touré
A chance for City. Balotelli races down the middle and lays off the ball for Kolarov and the Serbain puts the ball in the box for Balotelli to get his foot on it near the goal line, but the former Inter Milan player kicks it out of play instead of the target.
A mix of possession in these first few minutes of the second period with neither side keeping hold of the ball for long.
And we’re off again as Manchester City get the game back underway.
And that’s half-time.
It’s all square at Wembley with both teams having their share of chances on goal. United began turning the screw in the initial 25 minutes before City woke up half way through the first period and started asking questions of their own. It looks like anyone’s at the moment and the game is giving us all the entertainment we anticipated, but a first goal would do no harm and the crowd in North London would very much welcome it. See you in 15.
Yaya Toure has a spirited effort from outside the box, but doesn’t get a clean shot. However, the ball finds its way to Kompany and the City captain thrashes at the ball and surprises everyone with a cracking strike, testing Van der Sar but goes just out of reach from the right post.
Sir Alex looks fed up in the Wembley stands as he looks on after a Nani effort from distance. His Italian counterpart seems to be all riled up on the side-lines meanwhile and could see his side finish the stronger of the two sides at the end of the first-half as we enter the last five minutes.
Another chance for City. A flurry of corners from the Eastlands outfit eventually gives them a chance of a shot. The ball comes in from Silva and finds Lescott at the back post free of a marker and the defender strikes with his weaker right-foot and goes over. City seem to be asking a few more questions of United.
Balotelli also comes alive with a delightful effort of his own from distance as the Italian hits hard with his right foot and his effort seemingly dips towards the top of Van der Sar’s goal, but the Dutch veteran gets a hand to it. Good pressure now it seems from City.
Mancini’s men seemed to have woken up slightly. Silva works the ball delicately around the area and gets a pass into the United box which finds its way to Barry who is able to hold off his marker and turn on the ball to get a decent shot away. However, his left-foot effort hits the side netting.
City are trying to get the ball to Balotelli up at the top on his own, but the United defence is staying strong whilst their midfield dictate the majority of the game and the Red Devil’s work has earned them a free-kick in a good position. Nani will take and goes for goal, but his effort goes straight into the wall and gets a corner. Berbatov is found once more from the set-piece and heads well from just inside the area, but goes wide once more.
The game has calmed a little now, but United still holding onto possession and are looking to gradually press City. Nani is having a lot of the ball down the left-side. Another corner is won and taken by Valencia. The in-swinging ball finds Vidic, but the Serbain heads the ball some way wide of the target.
It’s all United right now and they find themselves with another corner. Valencia plays it short to Park and the South Korean plays it back to the winger who follows up with a ball towards the back post. Berbatov is there, but the former Tottenham man can’t get his header on target.
Rooney's face said it all as his teammate failed to put United ahead with two consecutive chances. You can’t help but think the former Everton man would be thinking that he’d of scored from such opportunities if he was on the field.
Berbatov goes close! Twice! A Scholes-Park interchange outs the Bulgarian through on Hart, but the striker can’t get it through the England ‘keeper and the ball finds its way to Nani who comes down the left-wing to put it across the face of goal and Berbatov get s a foot on it only to take the ball over the bar, injuring himself in the process.
First corner of the game and it’s for United. Nani takes and aims towards the middle of the area, but Hart confidently punches away to safety.
Van der Sar stops Balotelli coming through on goal after an accurate pass across the ground in front of the United defence from Yaya Toure. Both sides look a bit tentative going forward and that shows with us yet to see any real go on goal.
Nothing yet in terms of chances. Hopefully Balotelli won’t feel too lonely up there on his own as he looks to make his mark in his first ever Manchester derby. United meanwhile could miss the banned Rooney, with Berbatov making his first start for a few games.
City holding onto the ball well in these early moments with some good passing, but both teams look calm as the play builds up.
And we’re off as Manchester United get the game underway.
The players are in the tunnel now with many a focused face upon each and every player and as they emerge the fans roar thunderously around the North London stadium. The action’s not too far away now.
City have a lot to gain from getting through the final, let alone winning it. It has been 30 years since the team have found themselves in an FA Cup semi-final and was the same year they reached the final itself. Most will be aware of it being 35 years this season since the last piece of silverware came to the blue side of Manchester, the fans at the Stretford End of Old Trafford won’t let them forget that one. Meanwhile the red side are still on for their treble and will hope to overcome their rivals in this inaugural Manchester derby at Wembley.
Manchester United (4-3-2-1): Van der Sar, O'Shea, Ferdinand, Vidic, Evra, Scholes, Carrick, Park, Valencia, Berbatov, Nani. Subs: Kuszczak, Owen, Anderson, Smalling, Hernandez, Fabio, Gibson.
Manchester City (4-5-1): Hart, Zabaleta, Kompany, Lescott, Kolarov; De Jong, Barry, Yaya Toure, Silva, Adam Johnson; Balotelli. Subs: Taylor, Boyata, Vieira, Milner, Wright-Phillips, Dzeko, Jo.
Here come the line-ups....
Hello and welcome to Goal.com UK’s live coverage of the FA Cup semi-final between Manchester City and Manchester United. Arguably the showcase fixture of this weekend’s football, this match should offer a whole feast of action as these two fierce rivals go head-to-head once more this season. There’s been plenty to talk about ahead of this game with Sir Alex taking a moment to actually offer his counterpart at City some praise in Roberto Mancini’s side and the quality they possess. Meanwhile, Paul Scholes insists that the Eastlands outfit are not yet their direct rivals. Mancini himself is out to start a new dynasty with City, with this season’s FA Cup as the catalyst and begin a similar revolution that Sir Alex had much success with in the 1990s.
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