Wigan Athletic have stunningly won their first ever FA Cup, with The Lactics earning an outstanding 1-0 win over Manchester City through Ben Watson’s injury time goal. The Lactics were competing in their first ever FA Cup final, and became the first side since 1988 to win the trophy after reaching the final for the first time. Although City were given the chance to win the cup for the second time in three years, they failed to grasp what would have been an important title.
City were the dominant side in the opening minutes, and Yaya Toure almost put Roberto Mancini’s side in front after only four minutes with a fierce dipping volley from the edge of the box that Wigan goalkeeper Joel Robles brilliantly pushed wide. Wigan settled into the game though, with Callum McManaman coming close to opening the scoring for Wigan in the eighth minute. Arouna Kone sent McManaman in down the right, and after taking the into space in the right side of the City box, the McMananman cut back onto his left foot and curled an effort just wide of the far post.
Wigan began to completely boss the game, but couldn’t create any chances, and were lucky not to go behind in the twenty-eighth minute when Samir Nasri did brilliantly down the right, beating two Wigan defenders, before slipping a pass through the Wigan defense to David Silva down the left side of the Wigan box. Silva cut the ball back to Carlos Tevez, who’s low shot was somehow tipped over by the outstretched toe of Robles. The Lactics did not stop pressuring though, and after Antolin Alcaraz played a wonderful through ball to the run of McManaman, who took it past Matja Nastasic. The young winger took the ball up to goalkeeper Joe Hart, but pranceed around in the box for too long before getting his shot off, which was blocked by Pablo Zabaleta. Although City threatened to grab a goal, they couldn’t score before the end of the first half, which ended 0-0.
Although Wigan were dominant in the opening minutes of the half, City almost took the lead in the forty-ninth minute after Tevez did brilliantly down the right, beating Paul Scharner with ease. The Argentine sent a low cross into the box, which Emmerson Boyce managed to turn behind after Sergio Aguero’s flick. Vincent Kompany tipped McManaman’s shot wide, before City’s Jack Rodwell headed James Milner’s free-kick from the right into the hands of Robles. Shaun Maloney’s curling free-kick from the right skimmed off the crossbar, before City’s game took a turn for the worse in the eighty-fifth minute when Zabaleta became the third man to be sent off in an FA Cup final. McManaman’s touch after Kone slipped him in through in on goal took him past Zabaleta, who sent the winger flying with a late challenge, which earned him his second booking of the night. Maloney sent the resulting free-kick just over the bar, but Wigan couldn’t take advantage of being a man up, until the third minute of injury time. Maloney whipped a corner from the right to the near post, which an unmarked Ben Watson flicked towards the far post. The unstoppable header flew over Hart and Aguero at the far post into the top corner of the net to give Wigan an incredible lead. The Lactic’s celebrated wildly, and although City applied some late pressure, Martinez’s side held on to the win, and the match ended 1-0 to give Wigan their first ever FA Cup title.
Man of the Match: Joel Robles