By: Gyang Dakwo
Manchester City moved to within one victory of completing a momentous treble as they deservedly beat arch-rivals Manchester United 2-1 in the FA Cup final thanks to Ilkay Gundogan’s record-breaking double on Saturday.
City Captain Gundogan scored the fastest goal in FA Cup final history with a stunning volley after 12 seconds and struck what proved to be the winner seven minutes after halftime.
In doing so the 32-year-old, who is expected to leave City in the summer after seven trophy-laden years, became the oldest player to score an FA Cup final brace since Nat Lofthouse for Bolton Wanderers in 1958, also against United.
United, seeking to win both domestic cups in the same season for the first time in their history and wreck City’s hopes of emulating their own historic 1999 treble, had levelled with a 33rd-minute Bruno Fernandes penalty.
Pep Guardiola’s side resisted some late United pressure to win the trophy for a seventh time.
It is the 13th time the English league and FA Cup double has been achieved. But City now want more and travel to Istanbul to face Inter Milan seeking to be crowned European champions for the first time and to equal United’s 1998-99 Premier League/FA Cup/Champions League sweep under Alex Ferguson.
For United they can console themselves with a League Cup trophy in manager Erik Ten Hag’s encouraging first season and will hope Inter can stop City next Saturday.