Manchester City lifted the Carabao Cup for the fourth season in a row on Sunday after beating Tottenham Hotspur 1-0 at Wembley. Pep Guardiola's men dominated proceedings and produced their slick possession-based football from the get-go as Spurs spent most of the evening chasing shadows.
Despite being on the receiving end of constant pressure throughout the first half, Spurs entered the half-time interval without conceding, courtesy of Hugo Lloris.
Interim manager Ryan Mason witnessed his team produce a promising start to the second half as Giovani Lo Celso forced a good save from Zack Steffen.
Spurs looked determined to take the game to Manchester City, and soon Harry Kane made a driving run from the halfway line before feeding Pierre-Emile Hojberg. The midfielder anticipated Sergio Reguilon to overlap and he nudged the ball into space, but the Spurs full-back was not on the same page and the chance went abegging.
Much to the disappointment of Spurs, they were eventually punished for not making the best use of their early dominance after the interval. Serge Aurier brought Raheem Sterling down on the left flank and presented Manchester City with a set-piece. Kevin De Bruyne then stepped up and delivered the perfect ball into the area for Aymeric Laporte to leap high and plant his downward header into the bottom corner to give Manchester City the lead in the 82nd minute.
For all the slick passing and movement Manchester City produced throughout the evening, the winning goal came from a dead-ball situation. Without further delay, let us take a closer look at the individual performances from the final at Wembley.
Zack Steffen - 7/10
The 26-year-old was hardly made to sweat throughout the game. When Steffen was eventually called into action straight after the interval, he was equal to the task. The shot-stopper produced a good save to deny Lo Celso and that was the only time he was seriously involved in the game.
Kyle Walker - 7/10
The former Spurs defender showed great promise in attack early on but was later overshadowed by Riyad Mahrez on the right wing. Irrespective of his lack of involvement inside the final third as the game progressed, Walker was steady at the back and kept Son quiet.
Ruben Dias - 7/10
Calm and composed on the ball, Dias was his usual self at the back for Manchester City. The Portuguese was involved in building out from the back and hardly put a foot wrong in the game. It is astonishing how quickly he has established himself in this team.
Aymeric Laporte - 8/10
The centre-back picked up a booking just before half-time but never looked like treading a fine line. Laporte eventually proved to be the match-winner with his excellent header towards the dying embers of the game. Things could have hardly ended any better for the man of the moment.
Joao Cancelo - 8/10
The full-back was a constant thorn on the flesh for Spurs down the left flank with his overlapping runs for Manchester City. Cancelo set the tone for the dominance in the first half with his excellent movement past Hojberg on the left and did not look back. Defensively sound as well whenever called upon, he is a real asset to any team.
Ilkay Gundogan - 7/10
Gundogan went about his business as usual in the middle of the park for Manchester City and was constantly looking forward to getting inside the Spurs penalty area. The German midfielder made his intentions clear with a header over the crossbar and an attempt that drifted wide from close range.
Fernandinho - 7/10
Heavily involved in the build-up by Manchester City throughout the game. Fernandinho was also instrumental in recycling possession and provided the base for others to flaunt their panache while going forward. With the triumph, Fernandinho has now won six Carabao Cup titles. No one has won more.
Kevin De Bruyne - 8/10
The Belgian has quality written all over him. De Bruyne pressed high up the pitch and looked to feed one of his Manchester City teammates in behind at every opportunity.
The midfielder produced two excellent lobbed passes for Sterling and Foden, but his teammates were unable to latch on and convert them. Obviously, De Bruyne also supplied the cross for the winning goal with his excellent set-piece delivery.
Riyad Mahrez - 9/10
Sergio Reguilon had no idea what to do with Riyad Mahrez. The Algerian proved a constant menace as he cut inside from the right and tested Spurs time and again. Without a shadow of doubt, Mahrez was the biggest threat for Spurs throughout the game. As such, he was also deservedly adjudged as the player of the match.
Raheem Sterling - 7/10
The forward started bright and was heavily involved in every move. However, Sterling seemed to lack composure in front of goal and was not sharp with his finishing. There were plenty of encouraging signs otherwise though, especially with his willingness to work the channels and make space for others.
Phil Foden - 8/10
A real treat to watch when he plays the way he did in the first half. Foden has established himself as a generational talent and it is hard to argue why he shouldn't play every game for Manchester City. The 20-year-old enthralled with his clever movement and quick change of direction. It is scary to think he is only getting started.
Substitutes (Manchester City)
Rodri - N/A
Replaced Fernandinho in the 84th minute
Bernardo Silva - N/A
Replaced Kevin De Bruyne in the 87th minute