Sunday February 27, 2011 Final Finished Wembley

Arsenal 1 - 2 Birmingham City

  • van Persie 39’
  • Žigic 28’
  • Martins 90’

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  1. Birmingham stun Arsenal to win Cup

    Birmingham stun Arsenal to win Cup

    Obafemi Martins scored a dramatic late winner to win the Carling Cup for Birmingham City by sealing a 2-1 win over Arsenal at Wembley. More

  • Live Commentary

    Time:90'
    • Arsenal
    • Birmingham City
    • - Captain Stephen Carr lifts the trophy... BIRMINGHAM ARE THE CARLING CUP CHAMPIONS!!! Next stop for the Blues, Europe!
    • - A dejected Arsenal squad, led by Van Persie, go up to collect their runners-up medals. The half of the stadium which held their fans is now virtually empty.
    • - Arsenal's players break down on the field as the Blues celebrate around them! Who could have expected this? The Gunners' wait for a trophy continues...
    • 90+5' Referee Mike Dean blows the final whistle and Birmingham have won the Carling Cup! The underdogs have done it! Their second ever major trophy, and they worked so hard for it!
    • 90+4' Martins muscles past Djourou and almost gets around Szczesny! The keeper sent him wide enough! What havoc the substitute has caused the Gunners!
    • 90+3' Larsson wins a corner for Birmingham. Clichy is limping, but he probably won't have to defend a ball into the box here!
    • 90+2' Birmingham substitution: Cameron Jerome replaces Zigic.
    • 90+1' Martins is sent free and Szczesny has to come right out of his box to stop him... He makes the block with his chest!
    • 90' Well, that was incredible. Arsenal have four monutes of stoppage time to scrape a draw and force extra time.
    • 89' GOAL!! GOAL!! GOAL!! Martins has surely scored the winner for Birmingham! Zigic's flick-on causes confusion between Koscielny and Szczesny, and the keeper spills the ball right into Martins's path and the Nigerian taps into the open goal!
    • 89' Larsson and Zigic drop back to help out with the defensive duties. Clichy fouls Carr as he tries to send a long ball up the field.
    • 88' Sagna sent running down the right by Rosicky and he wins a throw in the final third.
    • 87' Zigic holds the ball up well and Birmingham can bring men forward. Djourou hacks Carr's cross clear and now the Gunners can attack. Rosicky fients a shot and slips a ball through for Chamakh that has just too much weight on it.
    • 86' Zigic's box lets him down as he lets a crossfield pass go out for an Arsenal throw.
    • 85' Wilshere sprints forward to latch on to Nasri's dummy into the box but Foster is just as quick off his line.
    • 84' Beausejour nods Carr's cross down into the box but it's too far ahead of Martins and Bowyer.
    • 83' Birmimgham substitution: Obafemi Martins replaces Fahey. Both managers really going for it with their switches.
    • 82' Larsson's corner is flicked on at the near post but Arsenal clear the danger.
    • 81' Larsson digs out another decent cross from deep and it's over Zigic's head but Beausehour wins a corner.
    • 80' Another class stop from Foster! This time it's from Nasri's shot fromt he edge of the box. Birmingham's keeper has been a hero for them n the past few minutes!
    • 79' Chamakh forces Jiranek into giving the ball away. He picks out Bendtner in the area and the ball breaks loose for Ropsicky. The Czech tries the cheeky backheel and Foster blocks it!
    • 77' Arsenal substitution: Marouane Chamakh replaces Arshavin. The Moroccan scored the winner against Birmingham when the two sides met in October.
    • 76' Bendtner teases Larsson before cutting inside and firing for the near post... Saved well by Foster! For the first time in this half some cracks are beginning to appear in Birmingham's back line.
    • 75' Ferguson gets into the box but it's a good tackle from Clichy. That instigates a break and Arsenal have men pouring forward. Nasri tees Rosicky up for the shot... Blocked by Foster!
    • 73' Bendtner is sent running after a through ball but Johnson gets in front of him to clear for a throw-in.
    • 72' Nasri uses his quick feet to work half a yard for a shot on the edge of the box, but the effort tamely rolls to Foster.
    • 71' Nasri swings in a free-kick from the right and Song heads well wide.
    • 70' Arsenal substitution: Nicklas Bendtner replaces Robin van Persie. The captain's armband goes to Rosicky. Bet Arsenal fans never envisaged it would be the Czech lifting Arsenal's next trophy.
    • 69' Johnson is still hobbling around. He gives a thumbs up to the bench, but Alex McLeish will be very concerned about the condition of his defensive rock.
    • 68' In both Arsenal's League Cup wins, they trailed 1-0, were level at the break (1-1) and won the match 2-1. That was against Liverpool in 1987 and against Sheffield Wednesday in 1993. (Infostrada)
    • 67' Nasri picks out Rosicky out wide with a precision pass, but the Czech's ball back into the box is intercepted.
    • 66' We are seeing the first real lull in action so far in this final. No doubt things will pick up before too long.
    • 64' Play continues with johnson back on the pitch.
    • 63' Johnson limps off the pitch. He still looks in a lot of discomfort. The defender has barely missed a minute f action since joining from Cardiff in 2009.
    • 62' Johnson lands awkwardly after jumping for a header with Van Persie. The Birmingham defender is receiving treatment on the field.
    • 61' Good run from Beausejour and Ridgewell plays him down the right wing. The chilean cuts inside past Song and gets his cross in from the byline... Szczesny catches it. Bright showing from the substitute.
    • 60' Arsenal again putting the pressure on. Fahey's effort aside, they have bossed this half.
    • 59' The corner is cleared but falls for Wilshere to strike... Again blocked for another corner.
    • 58' Arshavin has another effort blocked and Arsenal have their third corner.
    • 57' Beausejour fails to get his shot away from the edge of the box. Fahey's first effort rebounds back to him off Zigic and the Irishman smashes a low shot off the foot of the post! So close to a second for Birmingham! Szczesny was beaten all ends up there.
    • 56' Nasri is a bit too eager to get the ball off Bowyer, and concedes a free-kick in the Birmingham half. Zigic nods the long ball down and Bowyer blazes his half-volley over from distance.
    • 55' Arsenal clear it this time and they break again. Good work by Carr to snuff the counter-attack out. He's led his team by example this afternoon. Zigic is caught offside as he chases after a long ball.
    • 54' Cracking delivery from Larsson, and Koscielny heads over for a corner. another set piece to defend...
    • 53' Clichy is penalised for a foul on Fahey. He cynically blocked him off, and gets a booking. Free-kick from the right for Birmingham.
    • 52' Bowyer clears the corner. Birmingham try to launch a coutner attack but their progress up the pitch is slow.
    • 51' Arshavin with a neat turn and he slips the ball through for Nasri inside the box... Johnson makes an important block at the expense of a corner.
    • 50' Birmimgham substitution: Jean Beausejour replaces Gardner, who is clearly not happy to be leaving the pitch!
    • 50' Carr stands up Arshavin as the Russian tries to wriggle past him at the byline, and the Irishman wins a goal kick.
    • 49' Bacary Sagna pulls a cross back to the edge of the box for Rosicky to strike on the half-volley and it flashes wide of the post! Great move from the Gunners.
    • 48' Wilshere took a knock as he lost an aerial battle with Larsson. He goes off for treastment but is soon back on the field.
    • 47' Nasri and Arshavin try to get in behind the Birmingham defence from inside the box, but the BLues are continuing to resist them.
    • 46' Arsenal kick off the second half! No changes from either side.
    • 45+5' The whistle brings an excellent first half to a close. This final is nicely poised.
    • 45+5' Nasri hits a solid strike that stings the palms of Foster! He really caught all of the ball there, but it was too close to the keeper.
    • 45+4' Taken short to Nasri. Birmingham clear the eventual cross, but Arsenal keep everyone forward as they look for an opening.
    • 45+3' Nasri wins a corner off Ridgewell. This should be the last chance of the half.
    • 45+2' Play finally back underway. Larsson picks out Zigic, but the Serb's hader floats safely to Szczesny.
    • 45+1' Four minutes of stoppage time are signalled by the fourth official.
    • 45' Bowyer is down again after he gets a knock on the shin from team-mate Ridgewell!
    • 44' Arsenal are setting up camp in the Birmingham half now as they push for a second goal before half time.
    • 43' The free-kick floated in and Foster drops his catch! The keeper makes amends by catching Djourou's cross.
    • 42' Arsenal win a free-kick, and Larsson is booked for dissent as he contests the decision.
    • 41' Birmingham get the game back underway. The good news for Arsenal fans is that Van Persie remains on the pitch.
    • 40' Arsenal celebrate, but Van Persie has hurt himself in the process of scoring his 13th goal since the turn of the year. Nicklas Bendtner is warming up. This doesn't look good.
    • 39' GOAL!! Arsenal clear the set piece and break so swiftly! Wilshere recieves a square pass across the edge of the box and fires a solid strike off the bar! Arshavin now motors to the byline and cuts it back for Van Perise to hook a great finish past Foster!
    • 38' Plenty of time being taken before this free-kick. It's about 40 yards from goal.
    • 37' Bowyer is receiving some attention on the field. He's been in the wars already in this final. Koscielny was booked for the foul.
    • 36' Koscielny goes in for the loose ball with Bowyer and catches him with his studs. Free-kick to Birmingham.
    • 35' Former Arsenal midfielder Larsson causes panic in the Gunners box with a couple of devilishly whipped crosses. Arsenal are clearly rattled!
    • 34' Gardner is tripped on the edge of the box and the ball falls at the feet of Zigic right in front of the keeper... Szczesny dives at the feet of the big Serb to make a vital block! What a chance for Zigic to double Birmingham's lead.
    • 33' Good tackle on Arshavin by Stephen Carr. Arsenal getting back into their groove now. Rosicky goes in late on Carr. The Birmingham skipper takes it in good spirits and walks away smiling.
    • 32' Birmingham have scored the highest proportion of goals from set pieces in the Premier League (56%) while Arsenal have conceded the most (52%). (Opta)
    • 31' Bowyer is down on the ground after being nudged over by Koscielny. The midfielder takes a moment to get himself together, and will continue to play.
    • 30' The Birmingham fans are in high spirits, waving scarves and flags and making a right racket! Probably the best thing that could have happened for this final. Now how will Arsenal respond?
    • 29' Arsenal attack right from the restart and Van Persie strikes from the right... Curled just the wrong side of the far upright! Almost an instant reply from the Gunners.
    • 29' Zigic scores his fourth goal in his last five games as Birmingham again hurt Arsenal from a set piece.
    • 28' GOAL!! Roger Johnson heads towards goal from the corner and Zigic rises in front of Szczesny to glance it over the keeper and score!
    • 27' Keith Fahey curls an in-swinging cross in for Zigic to attack.. Headed behind for a crner by Koscielny. Six of the eight goals that Birmingham have scored against Arsenal in the Premier League have been from set pieces.
    • 26' Van Persie is played into the Birmingham box but his sharp turn in front of Jiranek causes him to slip over. The Dutchman is in blistering form at the moment, with five goals in his last three games in all competitions.
    • 25' Birmingham really working hard as a unit to press Arsenal in midfield and stop them getting through.
    • 24' Van Persie drops deep to collect Nasri's ball. He pings it out wide to Clichy after spying the left-back's run, but the move soon breaks down.
    • 23' The ball rebounds off Djourou in the Arsenal box and Laurent Koscielny has to hack it clear. Nothing pretty about that.
    • 22' Wilshere skips his way into the box but Johnson helps shield the ball and it runs to Foster.
    • 21' Nasri picks up van Persie but the dutchman's lay-off is cleared for a throw by Gardner.
    • 20' Arshavin makes a weaving run inside from the left again but his attempt at a strike from range was poor. Goal kick for Birmingham.
    • 19' Birmingham have conceded the first goal in seven of their last nine Carling Cup matches and four of the six they have played this season. (Opta)
    • 18' Lovely skill from Wilshere and he seds Arshavin scampering away down the left, but the Russian is stopped by a good tackle from Jiranek.
    • 17' Gardenr brings down Wilshere after the England midfielder nipped in to steal the ball from him.
    • 16' Zigic holds the ball up well inside the Arsenal area. Sebastian Larsson's cross from deep is headed back across the box by Liam ridgewell, but Szczesny catches it.
    • 15' The Emirates Stadium pitch is the same length as the Wembley turf (105 metres), but is seven metres thinner. Just thought you'd like to know.
    • 14' Great run into the box from Nasri, who jinks through three defenders but strikes the ball into the crowd.
    • 13' Arsenal settling into their rhythm nicely. You have to think that the big Wembley pitch will suit their passing game better.
    • 12' Rosicky tries to pick out Arshavin, but Johnson is on hand to cover.
    • 11' This is Arsenal's seventh appearance in the League Cup Final, and first since 2007 when they lost 2-1 to Chelsea. Only Liverpool (10), Aston Villa (8) and Manchester United (8) have made more. (Infostrada)
    • 10' Djourou again meets the header, but this time it's wide for a goal kick. The Switzerland international spent some time on loan at Birmingham earlier in his career.
    • 9' Arsenal come again and win a corner. Johan Djourou glances his header well wide. It must have taken a touch off a defender, because it's another corner.
    • 8' Nasri finds Arshavin in the box with a cute reverse pass and the Russian turns Martin Jiranek and shoots... It's right at Ben Foster, who saves with his legs!
    • 7' Robin van Persie runs on to Jack Wilshere's chip into the box an fires a shot on the turn from a very wide angle over the bar. Ambitious effort from Arsenal's captain for the day.
    • 6' Rosicky tries to spray the ball across the pitch to Samir Nasri, but it is over the Frenchman's head.
    • 5' Craig Gardner fancies an early pop from outside the box, but he drags his shot well wide. Andrei Arshavin has got a bloody nose already! Looks like it could be that kind of final.
    • 4' Roger Johnson slides in to tackle Tomas Rosicky as Arsenal patiently play around in the Birmingham half.
    • 3' Nikola Zigic chests the ball down and slips a ballthrough for Lee Bowyer. Wojciech Szczesny comes off his line and brings Bowyer down, but the offside flag was already up against the Birmingham midfielder! Replays show Gael Clichy was playing Bowyer on there! A very lucky escape for Arsenal.
    • 2' Barry Ferguson roams forward but he's stopped in his tracks by a good tackle by Alex Song.
    • 1' Birmingham kick of and we're underway! Can Arsenal finally fill that big gap in the honour roll that runs around the Emirates Stadium, or will Birmingham claim their first major trophy on almost 50 years? We're about to find out.
    • 15:58 The players are out on the field now, lined out ready to sing the national anthem. Well, Liam Ridgewell and Roger Johnson are. No one else seems to be. We'll be underway shortly...
    • 15:55 Today's referee is Mike Dean. The Wirral official sent off Arsenal's Laurent Koscielny in their 1-0 defeat at home to Newcastle back in November.
    • 15:50 Arsene Wenger has admitted that the Carling Cup is below other domestic and European honours in the pecking order, but is keen to claim a trophy and get that six-year monkey off his team's back: "It is true that winning the Carling Cup will mean we don't have to answer that question any more about whether we can win trophies." Read more from Wenger
    • 15:45 HEAD-TO-HEAD: Arsenal and Birmingham City have met 132 times in all competitions. Arsenal have won 59, Birmingham City 38 and there have been 35 draws. Arsenal are unbeaten in their last eight matches against Birmingham in all competitions (5 wins). Their only defeat in the last 19 was 2-1 at St Andrews in the Premier League on May 15, 2005 – six days before they picked up their last major trophy in the 2005 FA Cup Final. (Infostrada)
    • 15:40 Almost all of the pre-final build-up has been focused on Arsenal, but our regular Scottish blogger Desmond Kane believes that Alex McLeish leadership skills should not be discounted: "McLeish will lead his side off the team bus beforehand. This is what leaders do. With his ginger barnet, freckles and the nose of a bouncer from Glasgow's Gallowgate, McLeish remains every inch the fearless Scottish centre-half. These are the characteristics that marked him out as a player of genuine quality." Read Des Kane's blog
    • 15:35 ARSENAL: Szczesny, Sagna, Djourou, Koscielny, Clichy, Rosicky, Song, Nasri, Wilshere, Arshavin, van Persie. Subs: Almunia, Denilson, Squillaci, Eboue, Gibbs, Chamakh, Bendtner /// BIRMINGHAM: Foster, Carr, Johnson, Jiranek, Ridgewell, Fahey, Gardner, Ferguson, Bowyer, Larsson, Zigic. Subs: Taylor, Murphy, Phillips, Jerome, Martins, Parnaby, Beausejour.
    • 15:30 Former Arsenal midfielder Alexander Hleb is Birmingham's major injury concern. The on-loan Barcelona player suffered a knee injury during the FA Cup win over Sheffield Wednesday last weekend. A scan has shown severe bruising as opposed to any serious ligament damage and Blues will monitor his fitness. Defender Martin Jiranek is available after missing the 3-0 win against the Owls with a thigh injury. Striker Cameron Jerome is also expected to recover from an ankle injury. Birmingham team page
    • 15:25 Arsenal will be without captain Cesc Fabregas(hamstring) and Theo Walcott (ankle) against Birmingham. Striker Robin van Persie captains the Gunners in Fabregas's absence. Centre-back Laurent Koscielny has recovered from a back injury, while midfielder Abou Diaby is available again after suspension. Defender Thomas Vermaelen continues his recovery from an Achilles problem. Arsenal team page
    • 15:20 The Gunners are going for their first major trophy in six years - since winning the FA Cup back in 2005 - but for the Blues the wait has been a lot longer. Their only major trophy was this one, won back in 1963 when they beat local rivals Aston Villa 3-1 on aggregate. Their last major final was also in this competition, when they lost to Liverpool on penalties at the Millennium Stadium in 2001.
    • 15:15 Welcome to Eurosport-Yahoo!'s live coverage of the Carling Cup final between Arsenal and Birmingham City at Wembley!
  • Summary

    • - Captain Stephen Carr lifts the trophy... BIRMINGHAM ARE THE CARLING CUP CHAMPIONS!!! Next stop for the Blues, Europe!
    • 89' GOAL!! GOAL!! GOAL!! Martins has surely scored the winner for Birmingham! Zigic's flick-on causes confusion between Koscielny and Szczesny, and the keeper spills the ball right into Martins's path and the Nigerian taps into the open goal!
    • 80' Another class stop from Foster! This time it's from Nasri's shot fromt he edge of the box. Birmingham's keeper has been a hero for them n the past few minutes!
    • 79' Chamakh forces Jiranek into giving the ball away. He picks out Bendtner in the area and the ball breaks loose for Ropsicky. The Czech tries the cheeky backheel and Foster blocks it!
    • 76' Bendtner teases Larsson before cutting inside and firing for the near post... Saved well by Foster! For the first time in this half some cracks are beginning to appear in Birmingham's back line.
    • 75' Ferguson gets into the box but it's a good tackle from Clichy. That instigates a break and Arsenal have men pouring forward. Nasri tees Rosicky up for the shot... Blocked by Foster!
    • 57' Beausejour fails to get his shot away from the edge of the box. Fahey's first effort rebounds back to him off Zigic and the Irishman smashes a low shot off the foot of the post! So close to a second for Birmingham! Szczesny was beaten all ends up there.
    • 49' Bacary Sagna pulls a cross back to the edge of the box for Rosicky to strike on the half-volley and it flashes wide of the post! Great move from the Gunners.
    • 45+5' Nasri hits a solid strike that stings the palms of Foster! He really caught all of the ball there, but it was too close to the keeper.
    • 39' GOAL!! Arsenal clear the set piece and break so swiftly! Wilshere recieves a square pass across the edge of the box and fires a solid strike off the bar! Arshavin now motors to the byline and cuts it back for Van Perise to hook a great finish past Foster!
    • 34' Gardner is tripped on the edge of the box and the ball falls at the feet of Zigic right in front of the keeper... Szczesny dives at the feet of the big Serb to make a vital block! What a chance for Zigic to double Birmingham's lead.
    • 29' Arsenal attack right from the restart and Van Persie strikes from the right... Curled just the wrong side of the far upright! Almost an instant reply from the Gunners.
    • 28' GOAL!! Roger Johnson heads towards goal from the corner and Zigic rises in front of Szczesny to glance it over the keeper and score!
    • 8' Nasri finds Arshavin in the box with a cute reverse pass and the Russian turns Martin Jiranek and shoots... It's right at Ben Foster, who saves with his legs!
    • 15:35 ARSENAL: Szczesny, Sagna, Djourou, Koscielny, Clichy, Rosicky, Song, Nasri, Wilshere, Arshavin, van Persie. Subs: Almunia, Denilson, Squillaci, Eboue, Gibbs, Chamakh, Bendtner /// BIRMINGHAM: Foster, Carr, Johnson, Jiranek, Ridgewell, Fahey, Gardner, Ferguson, Bowyer, Larsson, Zigic. Subs: Taylor, Murphy, Phillips, Jerome, Martins, Parnaby, Beausejour.

Team Line-up & Ratings

  • Line-up

    Live Team Line-Up

    • Starting line-up

      • W. Szczesny
      • B. Sagna
      • J. Djourou
      • L. Koscielny Yellow Card
      • G. Clichy Yellow Card
      • A. Song
      • J. Wilshere
      • T. Rosický
      • S. Nasri
      • A. Arshavin Substitution Out (77′)
      • R. van Persie Goal Substitution Out (70′)

      Subs

      • S. Squillaci
      • M. Chamakh Substitution In77′
      • E. Eboué
      • N. Bendtner Substitution In70′
      • K. Gibbs
      • M. Almunia
      • Denílson
    • Starting line-up

      • B. Foster
      • S. Carr
      • M. Jiránek
      • R. Johnson
      • L. Ridgewell
      • B. Ferguson Yellow Card
      • C. Gardner Substitution Out (50′)
      • S. Larsson Yellow Card
      • L. Bowyer
      • K. Fahey Substitution Out (83′)
      • N. Žigic Goal Substitution Out (90′)

      Subs

      • K. Phillips
      • M. Taylor
      • D. Murphy
      • O. Martins Substitution In83′ Goal
      • S. Parnaby
      • C. Jerome Substitution In90′ Yellow Card
      • J. Beausejour Substitution In50′
  • Rate Players

    Rate Players

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    • Player Y! Users Expert My Rating
      Goalkeeper
      - -
      Defenders
      - -
      - -
      Yellow Card - -
      Yellow Card - -
      Midfielders
      - -
      - -
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      Strikers
      - -
      Substitution Out77′ - -
      Goal Substitution Out70′ - -
      Subs
      Substitution In77′ - -
      Substitution In70′ - -
    • Player Y! Users Expert My Rating
      Goalkeeper
      - -
      Defenders
      - -
      - -
      - -
      - -
      Midfielders
      Yellow Card - -
      Substitution Out50′ - -
      Yellow Card - -
      - -
      Substitution Out83′ - -
      Strikers
      Goal Substitution Out90′ - -
      Subs
      Substitution In83′ Goal - -
      Substitution In90′ Yellow Card - -
      Substitution In50′ - -

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