It wasn’t supposed to be like this, everyone had Arsene Wenger and his Gunners as overwhelming favourites to lift the trophy and put an end to their trophy drought instead it was Alex McLeish’s side who came out victorious at Wembley Stadium to give Birmingham City their first major trophy since 1963.
Nikola Zigic opened the scoring in the 28th minute from a corner kick which was headed on by Birmingham City defender Roger Johnson before the Serbian headed the ball into the goal. Moments before the goal was scored Arsenal goalkeeper Wojciech Szczesny brought down Lee Bowyer in the penalty but the play was stopped for an offside call which was clearly the wrong call. Zigic almost doubled Birmingham City’s lead but Wojciech Szczesny stopped the striker who went in 1 on 1 with the goalkeeper.
However, Birmingham City were made to pay for their failure to extend their lead when Robin van Persie scored a nice right footed volley in the 39th minute to get his team back in the game before the halftime whistle. The goal after Jack Wilshire had a shot rebound off the crossbar and landed to Andre Arshavin who then set up Robin van Persie.
The second half saw a different Arsenal side but it was Birmingham City who came close to going ahead when Keith Fahey had a shot hit the post. Last season Ben Foster was instrumental in Manchester United winning this tournament and this season he was once again star of the show as he came up with some crucial saves to keep the Gunners from getting a game winning goal.
In the 88th minute Birmingham City were rewarded a freekick which Foster took and played it into the box which caused problems for Arsenal as Nikola Zigic headed down the ball but Wojciech Szczesny fumbled the ball and Arsenal defender Laurent Koscielny scuffed his clearance and it landed kindly to Obafemi Martins who kicked the ball into the the wide open net giving Birmingham City a last minute winner to help them lift the Carling Cup, it was a well deserved victory.
- Wembley Stadium
- Att: 88,851