In Review

Guardiola under scrutiny as Mata and Mourinho sink City

EFL Cup victory lifts the gloom around Old Trafford and condemns City to a sixth game without a win

Man United 1 Man City 0

A goal from Juan Mata restored a smidgen of respectability to Jose Mourinho's Manchester United as they beat neighbours Man City to progress to the quarter-final of the EFL Cup.

After the humiliation of Sunday's 4-0 thrashing to Chelsea, United desperately needed a win and they got it thanks to Mata's strike on 54 minutes, the Spaniard firing home from Zlatan Ibrahimovic's pull-back.

It was one of the very rare moments of excitement in a dour local derby that won't linger in the memory. United's reward is a last eight clash against West Ham - who beat Chelsea 2-1 in match marred by crowd trouble - while City are now in something of a crisis.

The last time the Sky Blues won a match was 24 September, and while the focus in recent weeks has been on Mourinho and Manchester United, City will now be faced with some serious questions as to what's gone wrong after their slick start to the season when they won ten in a row.

Never before in his managerial career has Pep Guardiola gone six games without a victory but the City boss said he had "no regrets" about fielding an under-strength team, which showed nine changes from the one that drew with Southampton at the weekend.

"Sometimes it happens in football the manager doesn't win," he said. "It is part of our profession. Sometimes you win and sometimes you lose."

Asked to explain what was affecting the team, Guardiola replied: "Every match is different. I need to analyse them all. Every team has streaks of good results and bad results. The strange thing is after seven years as a manager, it happens now. But we are still getting to know each other, still improving and we will (improve)."

The same excuse could be used by Mourinho, whose United team lies seventh in the league, but the Portuguese preferred to focus on the positive after the edgy win over City in which he fielded seven of the side beaten by Chelsea.

"The players gave everything," he said. "[They] showed they really care and they fought for the fans."

Mourinho knows the importance of keeping the United fans on his side during this difficult period and he did just that after the final whistle. Making a 4-0 symbol with his fingers, he then lowered his head in shame, and he later explained to reporters the reason for the gesture.

"When I'm in a club my heart belongs to the fans and I felt deeply for them. The reality is that I never had people like these ones. We lost 4-0 and they were supportive. Today the stadium was full of real support and it looks like the love people have for the club is bigger than bad results."

Man Utd 1 Man City 0: Mata scores winner as Mourinho beats Guardiola

26 October

Jose Mourinho consigned Pep Guardiola to the worst run of results in his managerial career as Man United got their season back on track with a scrappy 1-0 win over local rivals City.

Mouriunho fielded a strong side at Old Trafford for the EFL Cup tie between two struggling sides, but they were disjointed in the first half and rarely threatened the City goal.

But while Guardiola's City side were crisp with their passing they too failed to mount much of a goal threat.

United looked more composed in the second half and Paul Pogba hit the post early on. But the decisive moment came after 54 minutes, when Zlatan Ibrahimovic broke into the City box and cut the ball back for Juan Mata to fire home.

Cup holders City tried to mount a comeback but looked toothless and rarely threatened the United goal, as the home side held on to record a vital win for their manager and leave City without a win in six games.

FULL TIME: Manchester United 1 Manchester City 0
92 mins: Whistles around Old Trafford

City keep pumping the ball into the box, but United are equal to it. Seconds remaining now.

90 mins: Four minutes injury time

Defender Maffeo tries to score what would have been one of the oddest goals of all time as City continue searching for an equaliser. He goes sprawling in the box after tangling with Shaw and as the ball loops into the box tries to head home while lying flat on the ground. He fails to connect and De Gea collects.

Pogba is booked for a late tackle on Otamendi and Ibrahomovic follows him into the book for timewasting.

We will have four minutes of injury time.

87 mins: Ibrahomivic defends from the front

Ibrahomivic has done precious little in front of goal in this game, but he is doing a good job of defending from the front and he wins a free kick in the City half after breaking up another City move, which is just want United want.

85 mins: United sitting deep

City still haven't worked De Gea in this match, but United are sitting deeper and deeper as the minutes tick by, and Pogba is content to hoof the ball down field as another City move breaks down.

City come back at them and another cross is cleared from the United box. They have held firm so far but they can't afford to let City run at them at will.

82 mins: Rashford comes off

Rashford puts the ball into touch and sinks to the turf. He's put in a decent shift and will be replaced by Jesse Lingard.

80 mins: United on the break

City have to push forward and they are almost caught on the break after some great work from Ibrahimovic, who comes deep wins the ball and gets United moving with Herrera bursting down the left. Pogba is in the middle but can't latch onto the ball into the box with City in full retreat.

77 mins: United look solid

Aguero has barely had a touch since coming on and when he does he finds himself isolated on the left flank.

United have been comfortable since they took the lead, and it is City who are struggling to break down the home side's midfield.

72 mins: Off comes Juan Mata

Mourinho makes his first change of the evening with 18 minutes remaining as Morgan Schneiderlin replaces goalscorer Juan Mata. A defensive decision? You bet.

70 mins: Here comes Aguero

Sterling is brought down by Herrera within shooting distance. It's on the City right and Kolarov steps up to try his luck from 25 yards. But his woeful effort flies over the bar.

And that is the cue for Sergio Aguero to enter the fray. He replaces Nolito, as Guardiola uses his final substitution. Mourinho still has three up his sleeve.

64 mins: Ibrahomivic chance

Sterling may be on, but Rashford is the winger doing the business right now. He fires in a wonderful low cross from the left and it reaches Ibrahomivic in the six yard box, but the Swede appears surprised by the chance and fails to tap home with the goal gaping.

Could that prove to be a big miss?

63 mins: Sterling to the rescue?

A wild 30-yard shot from Kolarov flies over the bar, as if to symbolise City's frustrations.

Sane makes way for Raheem Sterling.

60 mins: United on top

City are trying to regroup after the shock of that goal, but United for the first time in the match look to be in control. 

Guardiola could be about to throw on his big guns, however.

54 mins: GOAL! Manchester United 1 Manchester City 0

Juan Mata gives United the lead!

Finally United click and Mata makes it 1-0 from 18 yards after good work from Ibrahimovic down the left. The Swede burst into the box and pulled the ball back. Herrera and Fernando tussled for it but it fell to Mata who fired the ball home from the edge of the box.

City will argue that Ibrahomivic and Herrera commited fouls in the build-up, but Mike Dean awards the goal.

51 mins: Another chance

The volume has gone up at Old Trafford as United break down the right and Mata forces another save from Caballero. The ball then goes loose and Rashford tries his luck from distance.

49 mins: Pogba hits the post!

United are denied a goal by a brilliant save from Caballero as Pogba is gifted the best chance of the match.

It began on the United right and ended with Ibrahimovic playing Pogba in on the left of the box. But his shot was palmed onto the post by the keeper. Great chance, great save!

And United follow that up with a powerful run from Rashford down the left. Could they be stirring?

48 mins: Mata mistake!

Mata almost gifts City an early chance as he plays a square ball straight to Iheanacho. It sets up a three on three and the City forward feeds Nolito in the box, but he has strayed offside. Another big early let off for United.

46 mins: Second half underway

Aleksandar Kolarov is on for Man City at half time replacing Vincent Kompany. United are unchanged despite a disjointed first half performance.

Half time:

Man City had the best chance of the match inside the first two minutes, when Iheanacho got his head to a cross from Navas but could not hit the target. 

United huffed and puffed but created nothing until the end of the half when Ibrahimovic and Rashford both had opportunities, but neither forced a save from Caballero.

City were the neater of the two teams in the first half and it was not apparent that United boss Mourinho had picked an almost full-strength side for the tie.

With the likes of Aguero and Gundogan on the City bench, Guardiola's side could consider themselves favourites in the second half. Unless, that is, United can find some time on the ball and get their passing game, which was woeful at times in the first period, working properly.

HALF TIME: Man United 0 Man City 0

Referee Mike Dean blows for half time with the game scoreless and plenty for both managers to contemplate.

41 mins: Iheanacho chances!

Now the game is opening up as Iheanacho surges into the United box, but his shot is blocked by Rojo as he bears down on De Gea.

Seconds later Iheanacho is in down the same channel again, but De Gea races off his line to collect the through ball from Nolito.

Ladies and gentleman we have a cup tie on our hands.

37 mins: Rashford chance!

And another chance for United as Rashford bursts into the box and bewliders the City defence with some nifty step overs, but in the end his shot is blocked. 

Finally United look like they are up for it!40 mins: Iheanacho chances!

Now the game is opening up as Iheanacho surges into the United box, but his shot is blocked by Rojo as he bears down on De Gea.

Seconds later Iheanacho is in down the same channel again, but De Gea races off his line to collect the through ball from Nolito.

Ladies and gentleman we have a cup tie on our hands.

35 mins: United chance!

A shot! Finally United get the ball into the City box and look menacing with it.

Rashford feeds Shaw down the left and he bursts into the box and cuts it back where Pogba and Ibrahimovic are waiting. But Pogba's heavy touch doesn't tee up Ibrahomovic and the Swede is forced to stretch for the ball and it loops harmlessly wide.

29 mins: Pogba frustrated

Pogba, the world's most expensive footballer, is reduced to trying to clamber over Fernando as the City man shields the ball from him.

There has been precious little action in the final third of either team so far.

United's next move sums things up. Ibrahimovic fails to find Pogba with a ball into the box and Luke Shaw comes flyinh in and flattens Navas as he mops things up.

23 mins: Ibrahimovic free kick

United win a free kick 25 yards out, but Ibrahimovic's shot sums up United so far in this match. It's fired straight at the wall and the resulting corner is cleared with relative ease.

United find themselves forced to pass the ball around their defence with City's front three preventing them from coming forward.

Valencia is booked for a late challenge on Fernando.

21 mins: City passing well

Aleix Garcia may only be 19 but he is not overawed as he orchestrates a City move in the United half. The passing is crisp and clean as you would expect from a Guardiola side, but the visitors cannot fashion an effort on goal.

But their approach play has been more coherent than United's. The home side have looked somewhat ragged and their passing has been distinctly average, with Herrera and Ibrahimovic both guilty of giving the ball away needlessly.

13 mins: City slip and slide

The biggest cheer so far has been won by City defender Otamendi, who slipped and fell flat on his backside as he attempted to control the ball.

Ibrahimovic has also trodden on the ball, and his opposite number Iheanacho picks up the first yellow card as he too loses his feet and slides into Blind.

Not one for the connoisseurs just yet.

5 mins: City pressing

City's youngsters look eager and are hunting down United in packs every time the home side get the ball, and Mourinho's side are struggling to get any control. The home crowd is in good voice though.

On the other hand, United's pressing game is patchy, and Pogba has been guilty if standing off his man in midfield on more than one occasion already.

2 mins: Iheanacho chance!

It only took Pedro 30 seconds to score for Chelsea on Sunday and Kelechi Iheanacho almost does something similar as he latches onto a cross in the six yard box after just a few seconds, but his header is wayward. An early let off for Mourinho.

1 min: We're underway

Man City kick off at Old Trafford in front of another full house. Who will emerge triumhant in a critical game for both managers?

7.58pm - Mourinho and Guardiola share a joke

The teams are out and the two managers embrace before the game gets underway!

EFL Cup LIVE: Mourinho goes strong, Guardiola makes changes

With so much riding on tonight's EFL Cup clash between Man United and Man City, Jose Mourinho has named a strong team at Old Trafford.

Paul Pogba and Zlatan Ibrahimovic are both in the starting line-up, with Ander Herrera, Juan Mata and David de Gea in the side.

Michael Carrick joins the misfiring Pogba in midfield, but there is no sign of Henrikh Mkhitaryan in the squad, which will only strengthen rumours that he is on his way out of Old Trafford after just a few months.

Man City, on the other hand, have made changes, with young defender Pablo Maffeo coming into the side at the back along with Nicolas Otamendi and Vincent Kompany.

Aleix Garcia is also an unfamiliar name in the starting line up, and another youngster Leroy Sane starts up front alongside Kelechi Iheanacho.

Teams: Man Utd: De Gea, Valencia, Rojo, Blind, Shaw, Carrick (c), Herrera, Mata, Pogba, Rashford, Ibrahimovic. Subs: Romero, Darmian, Fellaini, Schneiderlin, Lingard, Depay, Young.

Man City: Caballero, Maffeo, Otamendi, Kompany (c), Clichy, Fernando, Aleix Garcia, Nolito, Navas, Sane, Iheanacho. Subs: Gunn, Gundogan, Sterling, Aguero, Adarabioyo, Fernandinho, Kolarov.


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