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Liverpool v Man City: Caballero given final chance

By Mark Ogden

Published 27/02/2016

Cup call: Willy Caballero has played in every round
Cup call: Willy Caballero has played in every round

Manuel Pellegrini will risk Manchester City's best hope of silverware this season by leaving England goalkeeper Joe Hart on the substitutes' bench for tomorrow's Capital One Cup final against Liverpool, choosing instead to keep faith with Argentine understudy Willy Caballero.

The City manager, who will relinquish his post in the summer following confirmation of the appointment of Pep Guardiola on a three-year contract, has selected Caballero for every round of the competition so far this season.

Despite the 34-year-old's erratic performance in last Sunday's 5-1 FA Cup defeat at Chelsea, Pellegrini has insisted he will not restore Hart to the team at Wembley simply because silverware will be at stake.

"I don't change the way I think," Pellegrini said. "We won this cup with (Costel) Pantilimon playing the whole competition (in 2014), so it is no reason to change.

"Every manager can think which is the best way to win a trophy. I manage a team in my way of thinking that is the best way to do it and I don't change it.

"It's not an obligation to my word, it's an obligation to think that we are doing it one way in that tournament and it's important to try to finish until the end in the same way."

For Caballero the opportunity to emerge from Hart's shadow to play in a Wembley final is one he insists he is prepared for.

"It is my desire to play in this final and I am ready," he said.

"Do I deserve to play? It could be, but I have been thinking about this game for a long time since we won against Everton in the semi-final.

"It's not easy to be in my position, but you have to accept it because that's the life of a second keeper. It's hard, but we have to be ready and hopefully I get the opportunity, but Manuel (Pellegrini) has given me the confidence by playing me in this kind of game. That's been really important for me, but for him it's important to win.

"To be a big team, you need to win trophies."

Belfast Telegraph

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