Manchester City secured a domestic treble as they earned a record 6-0 FA Cup final victory against Watford at Wembley Stadium on Saturday evening.
City dominated the first-half and took a deserved lead as David Silva struck the opening blow with a clinical finish in the 26th minute. That advantage was doubled in the 39th minute as Raheem Sterling smashed in Gabriel Jesus’ lofted effort practically on the line but the goal was awarded to the latter.
Kevin De Bruyne came off the bench early in the second-half and coolly scored, with Jesus also getting on the scoresheet. Sterling wrapped up the FA Cup late in the game as he netted two excellent goals.
City enjoy early possession
As was probably expected, the recently-crowned Premier League champions enjoyed the majority of the chances in the opening stages. Bernardo Silva dribbled free and attempted to cut the ball back to Gabriel Jesus but Craig Cathcart did well to nip in front of the Brazilian forward and clear.
Despite the chances, Roberto Pereyra should have opened the scoring. On a wicked break, he was picked out excellently by Gerard Deulofeu in plenty of room. He had so much time and space but could only shoot straight at Ederson.
The Hornets continued to create opportunities, with the ball breaking to Abdoulaye Doucoure in the box. The midfielder set his sights for goal but Vincent Kompany managed to get in the way. There were plenty of handball shouts but the referee and indeed VAR awarded nothing.
David Silva strokes City into the lead
Pep Guardiola’s men soon did take the lead though and it was from one of the men who started in their last FA Cup success in 2011. The ball fell kindly in midfield for Bernardo Silva and he attempted to find Sterling but it only looped up into the air. David Silva and Raheem Sterling exchanged headers in the box before the former manufactured room and fired low beyond Heurelho Gomes.
They then extended their advantage as the first-half begun to draw to a close. Bernardo Silva lifted the ball into Jesus and he got their ahead of his compatriot Gomes to lift the ball into the net, with Raheem Sterling making absolutely sure by smashing it over line.
De Bruyne and Jesus put icing on the cake
They thought they had another one in the second-half as Jesus guided an excellent diving header home but was flagged offside.
The third did eventually come however and it was substitute De Bruyne who got it. Poor defending saw Jesus sprint in behind and pass the ball across the face of goal to the Belgian. De Bruyne, faced with Gomes, coolly checked inside and shook off the challenge of the stopper to finish into the unguarded net.
That was not quite the game finished however as Jesus was able to get in-behind once again. Instead of looking for a teammate, the Brazilian elected to go alone and finished low into the net.
Sterling wraps up the trophy and record with hat-trick
Guardiola’s troops were in a ruthless mood and Sterling had another say on the scoreline. Bernardo Silva displayed sumptuous skill to get to the byline and produced a great cross towards the England man. Unmarked at the back post, he thundered it beyond Gomes.
His afternoon was not finished there though. De Bruyne whipped in another brilliant cross towards the forward and only yards out, he powered an effort towards goal with the Watford goalkeeper tipping it onto the post. Sterling was the first to react as he picked up the ball and smashed it home to secure his hat-trick and the FA Cup and a historic treble for Manchester City.
Simply put, another stunning performance from City. They played some absolutely stunning football and were much deserving of their win and of course the trophy. Once chances were carved out, they were absolutely clinical, with all of the goals possessing an eye-catching element of beauty about it. Whilst the thumping defeat was somewhat harsh on Watford, they were not able to cope at all with their opponents. The Hornets will look back on a memorable campaign though despite a bitterly disappointing final.
Manchester City: Ederson (7); Zinchenko (6), Laporte (7), Kompany (7), Walker (7); D. Silva (8) (Stones (N/A), 79′), Gundogan (7) (Sane (7), 73′), B. Silva (8); Sterling (9), Jesus (8), Mahrez (7) (De Bruyne (9), 55′).
Watford: Gomes (6); Holebas (4), Cathcart (6), Mariappa (5), Femenia (5); Doucoure (6), Capoue (6), Hughes (6) (Cleverley (5), 73′); Pereyra (6) (Gray (5), 66′), Deulofeu (6) (Success (5), 66′), Deeney (5).
Goals: D. Silva (26′), Jesus (38′, 68′), De Bruyne (61′), Sterling (81′, 87′), De Bruyne (61′)
Referee: Kevin Friend
Yellow Cards: Doucoure (22′), D. Silva (60′), Femenia (80′)
Red Cards: N/A
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