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Carabao Cup

Manchester City lift the Capital One Cup after tense shoot-out victory over Liverpool

28 February 2016

Manchester City secured their second Capital One Cup triumph in three seasons after beating Liverpool 3-1 on penalties in the final at Wembley.

Goalkeeper Willy Caballero saved from Lucas, Philippe Coutinho and Adam Lallana to cap a fine personal run in the competition this season, in which he played every minute.

Brazilian midfielder Fernandinho scored the opening goal of the game in regular time, firing in from a wide angle under Liverpool goalkeeper Simon Mignolet.

But with seven minutes remaining, Coutinho slotted home after Lallana's effort rebounded off the post, forcing extra-time.

Emre Can had given Liverpool a positive start to the shoot-out when he coolly dinked down the middle, but it was all Caballero and City from there, as Sergio Aguero, Jesus Navas and Yaya Toure struck crucial blows.

City, by and large, created the best chances throughout the afternoon but, in the end, needed spot kicks to ensure manager Manuel Pellegrini will leave the club with silverware in his final campaign in charge.

The two sides were greeted by a feast of pyrotechnics and mosaics for the showdown that would decide the destination of the first silverware of the 2015/16 season.

Aguero broke for the first real chance of the game after 23 minutes, latching on to a neat through-ball from David Silva, but his effort was matched with a save by Mignolet, who superbly tipped onto his left-hand post.

The duo combined again in the 49th minute, when Aguero put through Fernandinho, who broke the deadlock after his shot found its way under the body of the Liverpool stopper.

Silva was the author of chaos for large periods of the game, and City should have taken a 2-0 lead on the hour when the Spaniard, in an abundance of space, picked out Raheem Sterling, who could only side-foot wide from close range against his old club.

Aguero then marched through again and went to ground after cutting back inside on Alberto Moreno, only for referee Michael Oliver to wave away the penalty shouts.

Sterling missed another chance with 10 minutes of normal time remaining, scuffing his effort wide of the penalty spot after more good work from Aguero.

He was made to pay minutes later. Daniel Sturridge flashed a ball across the face of goal, Lallana hit the post but Coutinho slotted the rebound into the bottom corner to spark jubilant celebrations from the Liverpool supporters.

Fernando could have won it with four minutes to go, but fired straight at Mignolet from six yards. The Belgian then saved again from three yards, blocking Toure’s shot after a goal-line scramble.

Aguero had the best chance in extra-time, when he went through on goal but once again couldn’t beat Mignolet, who made a strong one-handed save to his left.

Divock Origi almost scored a winner for Liverpool moments later, but had his header beaten away by pending hero Caballero, who later rose to the occasion to hand City their fourth League Cup triumph.

Liverpool: Mignolet, Clyne, Milner, Coutinho, Firmino (Origi 80), Henderson, Sturridge, Sakho (Kolo Toure 25), Moreno (Lallana 71), Lucas, Can.

Substitutes not used: Bogdan, Benteke, Allen, Flanagan.

Manchester City: Caballero, Sagna (Zabaleta 90), Kompany, Fernando (Navas 90), Sterling, Aguero, Silva (Bony 110), Clichy, Fernandinho, Otamendi, Yaya Toure.

Substitutes not used: Hart, Kolarov, Demichelis, Ihenacho.

Referee: Michael Oliver.

Attendance: 82,206.

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