Media Watch

Media: 'City have hunger of lions to lift FA Cup'

Media: 'City have hunger of lions to lift FA Cup'
It’s FA Cup final day and there’s no shortage of attention in the media as Manchester City prepare to tackle Watford with history in our sights.

A triumph at Wembley would not only secure a sixth Cup win for the Club but also see Pep Guardiola’s side become the first English team to win a domestic quadruple of league, FA Cup, Carabao Cup and Community Shield.

In the build-up to the showpiece occasion, there are passionate words from skipper Vincent Kompany about City’s relentless desire for more silverware.

Meanwhile, a number of leading pundits have looked ahead to the game and given their verdicts while there’s a warning too for City from Watford talisman Troy Deeney.

But we kick-off with some rousing words from our inspirational skipper Kompany who, in an interview with Sky Sports, revealed that the squad’s appetite for success was insatiable.

Sky scribe: “Kompany claims Manchester City have the ‘hunger of lions’ as they try to secure a domestic treble with victory over Watford in Saturday's FA Cup final.

READ: Guardiola | There's still more to come from City

WATCH: Final training before Wembley

GALLERY: Next stop Wembley as City head to London

SOCIAL: Get all our social channels in one place with the new CityNow

Pep Guardiola's side claimed their second trophy of the season on Sunday as they finally saw off the challenge of Liverpool with a 4-1 win at Brightonto conclude a thrilling Premier League title race.

“City captain Kompany, who has claimed nine major trophies during his time at the Etihad, said: "It's not about adding that achievement to my CV - I don't care about my CV.

"I know this team and they are like a pack of lions. When this team is hungry, they are such a special team.

"I'm going to do everything I can to put a bit of blood in that water, so this team gets even hungrier.

"We're a big team and there's no denying this. I'm so eager to play the FA Cup final. I'm so motivated."

Several pundits have also had their say looking ahead to the Cup final – and the thoughts of both Mark Lawrenson and Michael Owen make for encouraging reading for City fans.

Writing in his weekly BBC column, former Liverpool and Republic of Ireland defender Lawrenson is effusive in his admiration for Guardiola’s City.

Lawrenson writes: “They have won their past 14 league games to clinch the title and now they want to become the first team to do a domestic treble, so Pep will pick his strongest line-up - there is no point him messing around with it.

WATCH: Competition for places vital, says Pep

 “We know City always have a lot of possession, but people don't always recognise they have got great width, and I am expecting them to really stretch Watford out wide.

“Watford won't see much of the ball, and I don't see them creating many chances - so they have to make every set-piece count.

“Realistically, though, their chances of success rest on whether they can stop City from scoring.

“I know Wigan famously did that in the 2013 FA Cup final and won the game late on, but this feels like a very different situation. This City team are certainly different. They are serial winners, and they know how to get over the line.

“The 2011 FA Cup was the first trophy City won in the modern era, and with four league titles and four league cups following in the past eight years, they have not really looked back since.

“This is their first FA Cup final since 2013 but they have been to Wembley four times already this season alone, and I am expecting them to get the same result this time as they did on each of those visits - another win.

Lawrenson's prediction: City 2-0 Watford

Michael Owen is also confident that City can end a remarkable campaign on yet another high by overcoming Javi Gracia’s outfit.

READ: Boys of '69 on City's 2019 squad

WATCH: FA Cup final  | This is our City!

Writing in his blog, former Liverpool and England striker Owen opines: “Back-to-back Premier League Champions Manchester City will become the first side in English football to win all three domestic Trophies – also won the League Cup against Chelsea at Wembley in February – in one season if they beat Watford on Saturday and I can’t see past a comfortable win for Pep Guardiola’s side.

“The Hornets have lost their last 10 games against City in all competitions and Pep Guardiola has a perfect win record – six out of six – against the Hertfordshire side who are playing their first FA Cup Final since 1984 when they lost 2-0 to Everton.

“City lost their last Cup Final themselves against Wigan back in 2013, but this is such a fantastic City side that I can’t see the Hornets stopping them making domestic history and land an unprecedented treble.

“City have goals in so many avenues that it is hard to pick an opening goalscorer but their two outstanding players this term have been Bernado Silva and Raheem Silva and I hope to see the latter find the back of the Watford net first at Wembley.

“Gerard Deulofeu is, arguably, in the form of his life for Javi Gracia’s side – who have lost their last three – and I expect to see a big game from the former Barcelona and Everton striker.

Owen's prediction: City 3-1 Watford

WATCH: FA Cup Final: The calm before the storm

There’s a fascinating opinion piece from Daily Telegraph chief sports writer Paul Hayward, on why he believes a victory for City this evening would represent a fitting season finale for Pep Guardiola’s inspired leadership.

Ever perceptive with his words and opinions, Hayward pens: “Channelling Andy Murray, who gave a similar answer in tennis, Pep Guardiola responded thus to a question about Manchester City posting English football’s first domestic Treble: "The first time in men's football. The women have done it.”

“But Guardiola’s gender-spanning reply leaves the mystery unsolved. In England, where there have been 11 League title and FA Cup doubles by seven clubs stretching back to 1889, no team has ever won the League Cup, championship and FA Cup in a single season. Watford stand between Guardiola’s City and the end of an historical oddity.

“As the smallest of those competitions was born only in 1960-61, the Treble’s impregnability is really only 58 years year old - yet a City win at Wembley would still excite historians.

“The chance to leave a mark in history will also appeal to a team who may otherwise have been susceptible to a motivation dip after such a stellar league campaign.

“Domestic Trebles in Scotland are routine. Rangers have won seven and Celtic five. Benfica scored one in Portugal in 2014; in France, Paris Saint-Germain have three. In Germany in 1999-2000, Bayern Munich prevailed in the Bundesliga, DFB-Pokal and DFL-Ligapokal. Only in England, of the major footballing nations, though, is so much importance attached to not one but two Cup competitions. 

READ: FA Cup final | Guardiola's injury update

WATCH: Every City Premier League goal 2018/19

“To possibly be leading the team out in front of all those people, and having my family and friends there, it will be massive to me.”

“Yes, I think it will,” he said. “It’s the biggest occasion and naturally it’s a monumental game in terms of what it means to English football.

“To possibly be leading the team out in front of all those people, and having my family and friends there, it will be massive to me.”

CITYZENS: SCORE PREDICTOR - Score Predictor_FA Cup Final City v Watford_O18

View all club partners