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Manchester City 1-0 Tottenham Hotspur: 5 hits and flops as Aymeric Laporte seals City's 4th consecutive title | Carabao Cup 2020-21

Manchester City won their fourth straight Carabao Cup title.
Manchester City won their fourth straight Carabao Cup title.
Sachin Bhat
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Manchester City sealed their fourth consecutive Carabao Cup title after beating Tottenham Hotspur 1-0 in a tense final in Wembley.

Aymeric Laporte scored in the 81st minute from a free-kick as Spurs' resistance was finally broken. Until then, Manchester City were kept at bay with some resolute defending from the North Londoners, coupled with the heroics of goalkeeper Hugo Lloris.

The Lilywhites, who spent the entirety of the opening stanza in their own half, improved after the break, showing some attacking intent. But that didn't last long, as Manchester City reasserted their control and found the winner with just eight minutes to go for extra time.

It was heartbreak for Spurs once again, as they lost in yet another cup final, while City lifted their fourth League Cup title in a row and sixth in the last eight seasons.

On that note, let's have a look at five hits and flops from either team in the match:


Hit: Aymeric Laporte (Manchester City)

Aymeric Laporte was the unlikely winner for Manchester City.
Aymeric Laporte was the unlikely winner for Manchester City.

He hasn't scored many goals for Manchester City, certainly not this season, but Aymeric Laporte couldn't have chosen a more opportune moment to get on the scoresheet.

The Frenchman, who had a good outing, rose highest to meet Kevin De Bruyne's free-kick, nodding home from just five yards out as Spurs were caught out.

Given how the game had transpired by then, it looked likely that Manchester City would have to find ways other than open play to find the winner. Laporte, of all players, gave them exactly that.


Flop: Serge Aurier (Tottenham Hotspur)

Serge Aurier conceded the free-kick, from which Manchester City scored.
Serge Aurier conceded the free-kick, from which Manchester City scored.

Serge Aurier was guilty of conceding the free-kick which Manchester City scored from, and on the looks of it, that was completely avoidable.

The Ivorian tried to hook the ball away from Sterling but instead hacked him down near the byline, leaving the referee with no option but to award Manchester City a free-kick.

It was a mistake unbecoming of a 28-year-old professional playing the game for almost a decade.

Hit: Hugo Lloris (Tottenham Hotspur)

Hugo Lloris kept Manchester City at bay for most of the game.
Hugo Lloris kept Manchester City at bay for most of the game.

If there was one player who didn't deserve to be on the losing side, it was Hugo Lloris. The Spurs custodian kept his team in the match till the very end with some crucial saves early on and was arguably their Man of the Match.

The World Cup-winning Frenchman will particularly garner acclaim for his stupendous saves to deny Sterling and Cancelo in the opening stanza, showing excellent reflexes and strong hands to deny the duo.

It needed a set-piece for Manchester City to eventually beat the inspired Lloris.


Flop: Harry Kane (Tottenham Hotspur)

Harry Kane didn't attempt a single shot all game.
Harry Kane didn't attempt a single shot all game.

In all fairness, Harry Kane was hopelessly isolated for much of the game, as Manchester City dominated possession and controlled much of their territory too.

Yet in the final, Spurs would've loved to see more from their striker, who cut an anonymous figure for most of the game, much to their disappointment.

Kane's future has been called into question several times this season. He has been linked with a move to Manchester City, as Sergio Aguero is all set to leave in the summer.

Given the gulf in class between the two teams on the night, Kane will be hard-pressed about choosing to remain at Spurs or seek a move to a title-winning team like Manchester City.


Hit: Pep Guardiola (Manchester City)

Pep Guardiola became just the fourth manager to win the League Cup four times.
Pep Guardiola became just the fourth manager to win the League Cup four times.

Raheem Sterling or Riyad Mahrez, who won the man of the match award, could have been mentioned here. But one man who truly deserves all the plaudits is Pep Guardiola, who lifted the 25th title of his stellar managerial career.

After overseeing a disappointing, trophyless campaign in his first season at the club, Guardiola has transformed Manchester City into a title-winning juggernaut, exhibiting his tactical masterclass with every silverware.

Guardiola's rivalry with Jurgen Klopp may arguably be the best managerial duel of the day. But the former's consistency in winning trophies sets him apart from any head coach.

Edited by Bhargav
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