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Capital One Cup Final: Liverpool v Manchester City - preview

Liverpool v Manchester City

Liverpool v Manchester City

PUBLISHED

14:04 27th February 2016

by Ryan Percival

Liverpool versus Manchester City. Red versus Blue. Klopp versus Pellegrini. Toure versus Toure.

The Capital One Cup Final has all the ingredients to be a thriller, and on Sunday either Liverpool or Manchester City will land the first piece of silverware of the 2015/16 campaign.

Road to Wembley

The task facing the two managers – the charismatic German Jurgen Klopp and the experienced Manuel Pellegrini – is how to get the best out of their side come 4.30pm on Sunday under the arch, given that they've shown inconsistencies in their road to Wembley.

Liverpool narrowly avoided a scare against Carlisle United to get their Capital One Cup campaign up and running, needing penalties to see off the Sky Bet League 2 club, before overcoming Bournemouth 1-0 in the next round.

Then came an impressive 6-1 triumph over Southampton, before a 1-0 semi-final first-leg victory at Stoke City. The second leg at Anfield proved to be more difficult, and the Reds again needed penalties to advance – but they made it, thanks to Simon Mignolet's reflexes, and Joe Allen's composure.

Manchester City, meanwhile, are the competition's top scorers with 17 goals en route to the final. They recorded two 4-1 wins, against Sunderland and Hull City, and hit Crystal Palace for five in a 5-1 victory.

Everton proved to be stern opposition in the semi-finals but, having trailed 3-2 on aggregate with 20 minutes of the second leg to play at the Etihad, Kevin De Bruyne inspired City to a 4-3 victory and a place in the final of the competition they won as recently as 2014.

Gallery: Capital One Cup Final – Road to Wembley

League Cup history

That 2014 final, when City came from behind to beat Sunderland 3-1, is one of three League Cup successes in the club's history.

Yaya Toure and Samir Nasri scored two stunning strikes two years ago and, in 1976, Dennis Tueart was the player to hit the headlines with one of the most famous goals in City's history.

Famous wins: City's 1976 League Cup success

Liverpool's history in the League Cup is rich, to say the least, as the Reds have lifted the famous three-handled trophy a record eight times.

Their first was won in 1981, and they held the League Cup aloft in the following three years (1982, 1983 and 1984), before getting their hands back on it in 1995.

How I helped Macca: Jamie Redknapp looks back to the 1995 final, when Liverpool beat Bolton Wanderers

They've won the competition another three times since, in 2001, 2003 and 2012, with the latter being their most recent major honour – and they will now walk out in a record 12th League Cup Final, with their eyes firmly on regaining the prize.

Head-to-head

Sunday's showdown will be the first time the two clubs have ever gone up against each other in a major final, but it's the latest in a long line of encounters over the years.

Liverpool lead the head-to-head record 84-44, alongside 44 draws, and they beat Manchester City 4-1 in their most recent clash, at the Etihad earlier in the season.

Read more: Liverpool v Manchester City head-to-head

Match Officials

Michael Oliver has been appointed as the referee for the Capital One Cup. The 30-year-old will be assisted at Wembley Stadium by Simon Bennett and Adrian Holmes.

Bobby Madley has been appointed as Fourth Official, while Eddie Smart will be the Reserve Assistant Referee.

Read more: Michael Oliver to referee Capital One Cup Final

The most attended final!

The Football League is giving fans of Liverpool and Manchester City an instant digital personalised club shirt in return for them backing their team ahead of the Capital One Cup Final.

The campaign is part of a range of innovative social media activity that will also see fans able to receive instant pictures via Twitter of the two club’s dugouts during the game, and marks the first time sports fans in this country will have received instant personalised responses on Twitter specific to the team they support.

The combined physical audience of 90,000 fans at the match and the digital ‘crowd’ represented through the social media activity will mean the Capital One Cup Final 2016 will be the ‘most attended’ final ever.

Read more: Fans to get personalised #ShirtOfSupport ahead of Capital One Cup Final

Don't miss it!

The Capital One Cup Final will be broadcast around the globe and we'll be provided behind the scenes content and match updates on social media, so be sure to follow and use #CapitalOneCupFinal! 

> Facebook.com/LeagueCup

> Twitter.com/CapitalOne_Cup

> Instagram.com/footballleague

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