Manchester City scraped into the final of the Carabao Cup despite losing 1-0 in the second leg of their semi-final to Manchester United on Wednesday night.
It seemed like it would be a stroll of a second leg for City, having won the first leg 3-1 at Old Trafford three weeks ago, but Nemanja Matic's first-half strike made it a far nervier affair than most at the Etihad were expecting - securing an eventual 3-2 win on aggregate.
City spurned several great opportunities in the second half, but their quest to progress to the final of the competition they are trying to win for a third consecutive time was made easier by Matic's late red card to leave United with 10 men.
- Solskaer: Matic red a joke
- Live Football: What's on Sky Sports this week
- How the teams lined up
- Man Utd confirm Bruno Fernandes deal
Pep Guardiola's side will face Aston Villa in the final at Wembley on Sunday, March 1 - live on Sky Sports Football - after Villa beat Leicester in the other semi-final.
How City scraped into Carabao Cup final
Manchester City: Bravo (6), Walker (6), Rodrigo (6), Otamendi (6), Cancelo (7), Gundogan (6), Mahrez (5), De Bruyne (7), Bernardo (6), Sterling (5), Aguero (5)
Subs: Silva (5), Stones (n/a), Jesus (n/a)
Manchester United: De Gea (7), Wan-Bissaka (7), Lindelof (7), Maguire (7), Shaw (6), Williams (6), Fred (7), Matic (7), Lingard (5), Greenwood (5), Martial (5)
Subs: James (5), Pereira (n/a), Mata (n/a)
Man of the match: Kevin De Bruyne
United caused City all kinds of problems at the Etihad in the Premier League in December, but there were no signs of a repeat in the early stages. City started well and David de Gea was forced into early saves inside the first 10 minutes, denying Sergio Aguero's close-range header and then Riyad Mahrez's deflected attempt.
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Completely against the run of play, however, United got themselves back into the tie. It came from their first shot of the game as Fred's free-kick was only cleared as far as Matic, and he struck a fierce low shot from 15 yards which left Claudio Bravo with no chance whatsoever.
City's grip was loosened, and they looked briefly shaken. On 42 minutes they thought they were level on the night as Raheem Sterling poked in from Kevin De Bruyne's cross from the left, but the England man was rightly flagged for offside.
Sterling missed another golden opportunity for City on 59 minutes. This time he was onside as De Bruyne released him in behind, but he opted to cut inside rather than drive on and shoot, eventually firing over the bar as United defenders scrambled back to make it awkward for him.
- Man City made five changes from their 4-0 win over Fulham in the FA Cup on Sunday. Kyle Walker, Rodri, Kevin De Bruyne, Raheem Sterling and Sergio Aguero all came back in.
- Man Utd made four changes from their 6-0 win at Tranmere in the FA Cup on Sunday. David De Gea returned in goal, while Aaron Wan-Bissaka, Brandon Williams and Fred all came back in.
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Another glorious chance went awry for City after 74 minutes, too. Harry Maguire lost the ball in his own penalty area and presented substitute David Silva with the perfect chance to pop the ball past De Gea, but he opted to pass to Ilkay Gundogan, who was quickly closed down.
Matic, who had been booked early in the second half for a foul on Mahrez, was walking a fine tightrope with the referee after a few poor challenges, and eventually Andre Marriner's patience ran out after the Serb hauled down Gundogan, and he showed him the second yellow.
Aguero then had the ball in the net again for City late on after being flicked in by Joao Cancelo, but again he was correctly flagged offside.
What the managers said...
Manchester City's Pep Guardiola: "They played really well in both games, we were fantastic, we conceded the goal from the only time they shot. We were solid and we created enough chances to score a lot of goals.
"The same at Old Trafford, we created even more chances [tonight] but didn't convert, we have to learn from that to be more clinical. Of course we have to take the chances we have, the clear chances. We played really well, in both games, in 180 minutes we were better than United."
Manchester United's Ole Gunnar Solskjaer: "It's hard to score with 11 here, never mind 10. Never a sending off. For me, an absolute joke. It's ironic really that he gets a yellow with his first foul, almost gets a yellow with his second foul, which isn't even a foul.
"Yep, the last one is a yellow card, but a red overall? Nowhere near. How many times did they foul us today? How many times was Dan James fouled? In the first half, Jesse [Lingard]. They've given us absolutely everything these boys, I'm so incredibly proud. To come here and win twice in a short space."
Neville on Woodward attack
Before the game, Gary Neville reacted to the attack on Manchester United executive vice-chairman Ed Woodward's home.
Fletcher: United have a plan
Speaking on Sky Sports Football, former Manchester United midfielder Darren Fletcher insisted the club do have a plan, and that Solskjaer's transfer intentions are best for the long-term of United...
"Ole Gunnar Solskjaer has been unselfish and wants the best for United long term, so he's willing to sacrifice and think about how the decisions he makes now benefit the team in two or three years' time. That's not been done before.
"For me, this is the first time the club have had a clear plan for what they want to do two or three years down the road. Solskjaer is going to be here, is going to get a summer transfer window to buy players, and let's see where we are next year."
Man of the match: Kevin De Bruyne
Manchester City failed to score in a game for just the second time this season, but that was not the fault of De Bruyne. There were several occasions when the Belgian played a fantastic pass into a team-mate, but he was let down by early runs and poor finishing from the likes of Aguero and Sterling.
- Man City are just the third side to reach three consecutive League Cup finals after Liverpool (four in a row between 1981 and 1984) and Nottingham Forest (1978 to 1980).
- Man Utd have won consecutive away matches against Man City for the first time since winning four in a row between November 1993 and November 2000, with all wins in that run coming in league games.
- In all competitions, the home side has won just two of the last 12 matches between Man City and Man Utd (W2 D2 L8).
- Ole Gunnar Solskjaer is just the third manager to win two away matches against Pep Guardiola in his managerial career, after José Mourinho and Jürgen Klopp.
Both sides are back in Premier League action this weekend. Manchester City face Wolves on Saturday Night Football from 5pm (kick-off is at 5.30pm), while Manchester City head to Tottenham on Super Sunday from 4pm (kick-off is at 4.30pm). Both games are live on Sky Sports Premier League.