The Carabao Cup final is expected to offer a lot of thrills and spills as Manchester City lock horns with Arsenal on February 25 at Wembley.
Manchester City are in scintillating form and are cruising towards the Premier League title. They made light work of FC Basel by beating them 4-0 in the first leg of Champions League round of 16 on Tuesday.
Arsenal, on the other hand, have been way too inconsistent this season and shockingly lost to Ostersunds FK in the second leg of Europa League round of 32, although the Gunners progressed to the next round via a 4-2 aggregate score.
Arsene Wenger has a tough job in his hands to guide the team to a top-four finish this campaign. And to salvage this season, victory in the Carabao Cup for the Gunners has become essential.
Form is never considered an important factor in finals of any competitions and regardless of City being in rip-roaring form, they cannot underestimate Arsenal. Both teams boast of some top players and keeping that in mind, let’s take a look at the combined line-up ahead of the mouthwatering Carabao Cup final.
Ederson has been fantastic in his debut season for City. He has been one of the vital reasons for Guardiola’s free run towards Premier League glory.
Since moving from Tottenham at the start of the season, Walker has looked like the real deal under Guardiola. The right-back has lacked defensive discipline at times, but no complaints when it comes to his contributions in the attack.
A mainstay in City’s central defence, Otamendi has improved massively this season and makes an easy entry into this team.
Partnering Otamendi at the back will be Arsenal skipper Laurent Koscielny. The Frenchman has been erratic at times this term but he has been solid for the Gunners overall. A reliable persona at the heart of Arsenal defence.
Apart from his disciplined defending, what has been a feather in the cap for Monreal is his number of goals this season. The Spaniard is an accomplished defender in the left-back area and he also makes worthy contributions to the attack.
Never a tough choice to make; Fernandinho has provided the perfect platform for the City attackers to express themselves freely this season. He has offered the cushion to the backline and has contributed to attacks whenever needed.
Ilkay Gundogan (CM)
Gundogan has been one of Cityzens’ most influential players in the midfield all season and he showcased his class further on Tuesday with an eye-catching brace against Basel.
Kevin de Bruyne (CM)
De Bruyne has been a treat to watch this season. The Belgian’s creativity and inventiveness are just exemplary, which makes him a key for City in terms of attack.
Raheem Sterling (RW)
Sterling has been a player reborn under Guardiola and the way he is performing this campaign, it is impossible not to include him in this combined XI.
Mesut Ozil (RW)
The German has been absolutely phenomenal for the Gunners this season and he’s showing his quality week in week out.
Sergio Aguero (ST)
And to complete the team, who else than Sergio Aguero to lead the line? The diminutive Argentine has banged goals from everywhere and deserves to make it to the combined XI.
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