Football League Cup 2014 Final: Live Stream Info, Prediction and Preview

Matt JonesFeatured ColumnistMarch 2, 2014

LONDON, ENGLAND - FEBRUARY 24: A view of the stadium during the Capital One Cup Final match between Bradford City and Swansea City at Wembley Stadium on February 24, 2013 in London, England.  (Photo by Michael Regan/Getty Images)
Michael Regan/Getty Images

The destination of the first major piece of silverware in the English football season will be decided today as Manchester City take on Sunderland in the League Cup Final.

Sunderland reached the final in dramatic circumstances, beating Manchester United in a penalty shootout.
Sunderland reached the final in dramatic circumstances, beating Manchester United in a penalty shootout.Laurence Griffiths/Getty Images

The Wembley showpiece is a prime indicator that we are approaching the business end of the campaign. Here we preview the game, predict the outcome and give you the best information on where to stream Sunday's big game.

It'll see moneybags City take on a Sunderland team who's run to the final represents a classic underdog story. This season they've saved their best performances for the cup competitions and in their run to Wembley in this final they have knocked out both Chelsea and Manchester United in highly dramatic circumstances.

By comparison, City smashed West Ham 9-0 on aggregate to make it to their second Wembley final in as many seasons and are the big favourites to triumph here.


Streaming Info:

When: Sunday March 2, 9 a.m. ET

Sunday March 2, 2 p.m. GMT

Where: Wembley Stadium, London

Watch: beIN Sports, beIN Sports Play, Sky Sports 1, Sky Go App, BBC 1 (Highlights at 11:30 p.m. GMT)


Likely Lineups:

Manchester City (4-4-2): Pantilimon; Zabaleta, Kompany, Lescott, Kolarov; Fernandinho, Toure, Navas, Silva; Aguero, Negredo.

Sunderland (4-1-4-1): Mannone; Bardsley, Brown, O'Shea, Alonso; Cattermole, Johnson, Ki, Colback, Borini; Altidore.


Key Storylines

Despite Sunderland's cup heroics, they face pretty fearsome opposition in Manchester City. Manuel Pellegrini's side boast reams of quality in all areas of the pitch and their attacking play this season has been blistering.

Sergio Aguero returns to the Manchester City squad.
Sergio Aguero returns to the Manchester City squad.Ian Walton/Getty Images

They look set to welcome Sergio Aguero back to their squad, per David McDonnell in the Mirror, for this one and that can only be a bad thing for Gus Poyet's Black Cats.

Nonetheless, Sunderland will certainly fancy their chances of winning their first piece of silverware since the 1973 FA Cup.

City have been stuttering a little as of late and the Black Cats have a very good domestic record against their final opponents having lost just two of their last six meetings, per WhoScored. Poyet has spoken of how he’s relishing the pressure of beating City and becoming a Sunderland hero, per BBC Sport:

I was told last week that if I want to be famous or a hero in Sunderland then I need to win the Cup. 

It puts pressure on us but I love it. I cannot play, coach or manage without pressure - it wouldn't be me

As the overwhelming favourites, the pressure is certainly on City, too. The Citizens are still challenging for honours in four different competitions and supporters of a sky blue persuasion will be hoping a win here will trigger a trophy-laden climax to the campaign. It’s a trophy haul that their Chilean boss still has his eye on per Steve Millar in the Daily Star:

We have good harmony here and we’re playing in a good way. We have possibilities to win four competitions, so I think we are in a very good position.

You can win this cup but immediately you have the pressure to continue in the FA Cup. Then it is the Champions League and then the Premier League, trying to fight for the title – you can never be satisfied with what you do.

City will also be desperate to eradicate the memory of last season's FA Cup Final defeat to Wigan. Roberto Mancini's side were the favourites heading into that one too, but they seemed to underestimate their opponents and were tactically undone by Roberto Martinez, as they eventually lost 1-0 in a shock defeat.



In many respects, the aforementioned defeat in the FA Cup final last year will stand City in good stead heading into this one. As will their less than impressive domestic record against their final opponents.

It means they will be fully focused in the build up and that is bad news for Sunderland. The Black Cats have risen their performance levels against the more illustrious sides in this competition, but the quality City have at their disposal will prove to be too much for them here.

Silva and Aguero will be too good for Sunderland.
Silva and Aguero will be too good for Sunderland.Jon Super/Associated Press

Expect the returning Aguero to play a huge role in a City victory but for David Silva to be the main instigator. The Spaniard dubbed “Merlin” by the City faithful has been in excellent form as of late, and his ability to find space between the lines will cause endless problems for this Sunderland defence.

It’ll be tight initially but expect City to assert their quality as the game wears on and for Silva to see the ball in increasingly dangerous areas as legs begin to tire.

City will score two late goals to win 2-0 and bag the first domestic trophy of the season.