Wigan win the FA Cup but Manchester City are the real winners (photos of the Cup final)
ALL that money and Manchester City couldn’t win the FA Cup. The silver goes to Wigan Athletic, a club that has placed little emphasis on building the global brand and turning their kit into a nylon Mao suit for the throbbing Eastern fan base. Wigan have claimed their first major trophy in their 81-year history. Ben Watson’s last-minute goal won the FA Cup final at Wembley. Wigan goes mad (including the bits clad in ubiquitous Manchester United red). And Manchester City get ready to chuck loads more cash at the project based on vanity. Can City’s owner, Sheikh Mansour (current spend: about 500million), ever be happy? Does he fancy the long attritional fight that wins titles? The club’s manager Roberto Mancini delivered City’s first title for 44 years in thrilling style but he’s on his way. In modern football’s money pit, when fans are over-regulated into wallpaper in a gentrified and commercialised game, it’s heartening that Wigan can win. Of course it it. But ask Wigan fans if they’d like a moneybags Sheikh to buy their club and most would say ‘yes’….