Hello there and welcome to Sports Mole
's live text commentary of the FA Cup
final as Manchester City
take on Wigan Athletic
at Wembley Stadium.
Manchester City come into today's match hoping to get their hands on the famous cup for the second time in three years following their triumph over Stoke City back in 2011. That memorable day in the club's history saw them end a trophy drought of 35 years.
This afternoon marks an historic occasion for their opponents Wigan Athletic, who are appearing in the FA Cup final for the first time in their 81-year history.
There has been plenty of controversy surrounding the 5.15pm kickoff time for this year's final, but Wembley Stadium is swarming with fans both inside and out as we edge ever closer to the start of the match.
The early team news that we're getting is that Joe Hart is starting in goal for Manchester City...
MAN CITY: Hart; Zabaleta, Kompany; Nastasic, Clichy; Yaya Toure, Barry; Silva, Tevez, Nasri; Aguero
WIGAN: Robles; Boyce, Scharner, Alcaraz, Espinoza; McCarthy, Gomez, McArthur; McManaman, Kone, Maloney
It is indeed the case that Joe Hart starts in goal for City - his first appearance of the season in the FA Cup. Manager Roberto Mancini had selected Costel Pantilimon as his goalkeeper for the tournament, but he has ruthlessly swung the axe to reinstate his number one.
Mancini has made EIGHT changes in total to the side that beat West Bromwich Albion in the Premier League last weekend as Pablo Zabaleta, Vincent Kompany, Matija Nastasic and Gael Clichy all come into the defence. Yaya Toure and Gareth Barry are back in midfield, while David Silva and Sergio Aguero are also selected.
Meanwhile, Wigan boss Roberto Martinez has made two changes to his starting XI following Tuesday's 3-2 defeat at home to Swansea in the Premier League. Antolin Alcaraz has been passed fit for the Latics, while Jordi Gomez also returns.
MAN CITY SUBS: Pantilimon, Garcia, Rodwell, Milner, Dzeko, Kolarov, Lescott
WIGAN SUBS: Al Habsi, Caldwell, Watson, Di Santo, Henriquez, Fyvie, Golobart
While it seems harsh that Pantilimon has been dropped for the final in place of Hart, spare a thought for Wigan goalkeeper Ali Al Habsi - the Omani shotstopper has bought 90 tickets for his friends and family to attend today's final...
Anyway, enough of the sympathy: let's have a look at how these two teams reached the final...
R3: Watford 3-0 (h)
R4: Stoke City 1-0 (a)
R5: Leeds United 4-0 (h)
QF: Barnsley 5-0 (h)
SF: Chelsea 2-1 (n)
R3: Bournemouth 1-1 (h)
Replay: Bournemouth 1-0 (a)
R4: Macclesfield 1-0 (a)
R5: Huddersfield 4-1 (a)
QF: Everton 3-0 (a)
SF: Millwall 2-0 (n)
It has been a relatively simple route to the final for Manchester City, scoring 15 goals and conceding just once in their five matches up to this point. Meanwhile, Wigan had to get througha replay against Bournemouth in round three before empahtic victories against Huddersfield Town and Everton.
It can't go without saying that Wigan chairman Dave Whelan is due to lead the team out at Wembley Stadium today. The 76-year-old broke his leg in the 1960 final for Blackburn Rovers against Wolverhampton Wanderers and is being given the chance to get a proper taste of the Wembley atmosphere again this afternoon. It is a lovely touch from manager Roberto Martinez to a man who has done so much for the football club.
Looking through the history books and it makes grim reading for Wigan in terms of their recent record against Manchester City. They've lost their last seven games in the league against their opponents for today, failing to score in each of those matches. In fact, their last goal against City came way back in 2009.
Wigan's last victory over Man City was a 2-1 win in the Premier League in September 2008. The two teams have met twice in the FA Cup, with City winning both of those 1-0 in 1971 and 2006 respectively.
City's top scorer in this year's competition is Carlos Tevez with five goals, while Jordi Gomez and Callum McManaman are the joint top scorers for Wigan with three goals each to their names.
Wembley Stadium is filling up nicely now with about 20 minutes left until the 132nd FA Cup final gets underway.
City manager Roberto Mancini has looked very calm so far today, strolling along the touchline as his players warmed up out on the pitch. However, the Italian must be aware of the rumours that Malaga coach Manuel Pellegrini could be taking over at the Etihad Stadium next season. It would certainly come as a surprise if that was the case: Mancini could end the day with a third trophy in four years at the club.
It looks like were about to see all the pomp and circumstance that comes with the FA Cup final. The opera singers are getting ready to belt out the final anthem 'Abide With Me' and there are plenty of military folk out on the pitch.
The players emerge from the tunnel - Manchester City led by Roberto Mancini, Wigan Athletic led by Roberto Martinez and Dave Whelan - and they are welcomed by a roaring reception from the fans. What an atmosphere inside Wembley Stadium!
And here comes the national anthem...
A typically warbly rendition of the national anthem is sung with gusto by all four corners of Wembley Stadium and it will be Wigan to get us underway. Here we go!
An early half-chance falls City's way as Silva arrives in the box, but his volley is poorly hit and hacked away by the Wigan defence. The Blues are enjoying possession here.
SAVE! Robles is forced into a low save from Yaya Toure as the midfielder strikes a decent effort from 25 yards. Tevez's free kick was initially blocked by the Wigan defence but Toure was there to hit the rebound.
Wigan, who are known for their brand of possession football, are struggling to get hold of the ball in these opening stages. City are spreading the ball well and look fairly comfortable compared to their opponents.
Roberto Martinez's side are starting to come into the match a bit more now. McManaman has shown a couple of good bursts of pace down the right side that have got the City defence slightly worried.
CHANCE! What an opportunity for Wigan to take the lead! McManaman was played in by Kone on the right before cutting back onto his left foot. He tries to curl the ball into the far corner from about 10 yards, but he can only shoot narrowly wide.
McManaman is enjoying plenty of the ball for Wigan now and is looking very dangerous indeed. He's certainly a lad who plays without fear and isn't afraid to take on a defender or two, regardless of who they are.
Something of a half-chance again for Wigan there as Scharner heads well over from a corner. This is a good spell for Wigan, but can they capitalise and draw first blood?
City appeal for a penalty when Aguero looks to have been blocked off by Alcaraz on the edge of the area, but referee Andre Marriner waves play on. Looking at the replays, it seems like the official has got that one right. It is a contact sport, after all.
A slick counter-attack from Wigan ends with Kone blasting a shot from 20 yards into Nastasic. The striker had men available in the area there but opted to go it alone.
SHOT! Wigan continue to put pressure on Manchester City as Maloney has a crack at goal from 25 yards. It's not a bad effort, but it fails to trouble Hart and goes wide of the post.
We're only 25 minutes in but City are looking slightly bereft of ideas at the moment. Toure and then Nasri try to pick holes in the Wigan defence, but there's no way past. The Latics are defending resolutely right now.
SAVE! Wonderful stuff from Joel Robles to deny Tevez! The striker was at full stretch to divert Silva's cross towards goal, but the Wigan goalkeeper was there to turn the ball away from close range with his feet. Wigan then clear the resulting corner to survive the momentary spell of City pressure.
The game had entered something of a lull just before that chance for Tevez, but there's a bit of bounce in the stadium now.
Nearly an opening for Aguero as he picks the ball up from Tevez, but Scharner is there to block the striker and win the ball back for Wigan. That was some solid defensive work from the eccentric Austrian.
CHANCE! McManaman has City worried as he bursts through on goal before being chased down by Hart. The youngster dummies the goalkeeper to give himself a sight of goal on the angle but two City defenders get back before McManaman's final effort is blocked.
CLOSE! Clichy manages to work himself some space out on the left side before whipping in a cross towards Silva. The Spaniard gets his head to it, only to knock the ball well wide.
Amongst the McManaman chance and the Silva opportunity Wigan were appealing for a penalty when Espinoza went down under the challenger of Zabaleta. However, the Wigan man tumbled far too easily and the referee was right to wave play on.
City are certainly enjoying more of the possession now as Wigan look to strike on the break. They've looked very dangerous going forward thanks to the dynamic McManaman and Kone's hold-up play.
SAVE! Nasri forces a good save from Robles out of nowhere as his fizzing drive from 25 yards is kept out by the Wigan goalkeeper. Nasri showed great persistence there to work himself the space before getting his shot away. Meanwhile, there will be one minute of added time...
HALF TIME: MAN CITY 0-0 WIGAN
Referee Andre Marriners blows the half-time whistle to end an entertaining opening 45 minutes in this FA Cup final as Manchester City and Wigan Athletic go in goalless at the break.
Well, that was fun, wasn't it? Wigan really played their part in that first half with some thrilling attacking football. They certainly showed no fear against a Manchester City side who have struggled to get going.
The star man in that opening half was Wigan winger Callum McManaman thanks to his dynamic display out on the right wing. The youngster has given Gael Clichy a torrid time and has come close to scoring a couple of times.
There have been fewer performances to shout about from a Manchester City point of view, but Yaya Toure and Samir Nasri have done there best to get things going. However, some poor finishing and a lack of invention in the final third means that it is all to play for in the second half.
Anyway, it will be interesting to see if either of the manager will make changes for the second half or whether they will both be happy to see how things pan out for the first 10 minutes or so.
Here come both sets of players back out of the tunnel for the second half. No changes as far as I can see...
Here we go then, Manchester City will get the second half of this FA Cup final back underway for us...
It's interesting to note that the two teams will be shooting towards their own fans for the next 45 minutes. Will that spur either side on to make the breakthrough and grab a goal?
Not quite sure what Nasri was trying to do there. There Frenchman did well to create some space for himself down the left side before floating a poor cross well out of play behind the goal. There were plenty of bodies waiting for him in the box there.
CHANCE! Aguero comes close as he attacks the near post from Tevez's cross, but Boyce is there to block the effort as the ball goes out for a corner. City win another corner soon after, only for Kompany to head over.
SUBSTITUTION: The first change of the match is made by Manchester City as Samir Nasri is replaced by James Milner.
City have been by far the better side since the restart, using both wings to attack Wigan at every opportunity.
PENALTY APPEAL! Big appeals from Manchester City as Aguero looks to have been brought down by Scharner in the area while trying to get on the end of Tevez's pass. That could easily have been given...
BOOKING: The first yellow card of this year's final is given to Pablo Zabaleta for a cynical foul on McManaman. The Argentine knew exactly what he was doing there as the Wigan winger burst forward.
Sarcastic cheers from the Wigan fans as Silva's free kick evades everyone and goes out for a goal kick. That was a good chance for the Spaniard to whip a dangerous ball into the box, but his delivery was unusually sloppy. Meanwhile, Gomez lashes a speculative effort well over the bar at the other end.
CHANCE! McManaman goes on a winding run in the area that nearly results in a goal, but Kompany is there to make a superb last-ditch tackle. The Wigan youngster twisted a turned past a couple of defenders, only to be met by the lunging City captain. This FA Cup final has just picked up again!
SUBSTITUTION: Another change for City now as Carlos Tevez makes way for Jack Rodwell. An interesting swap, that one. It probably means that Yaya Toure will now push further forward as we enter the final 20 minutes of normal time.
It must be said that the Wigan fans have been in fine voice all evening and they are still making most of the noise as they try to spur their team on in what is ther first ever FA Cup final.
SAVE! Rodwell rises highest to head Milner's cross towards goal, but Robles is there to make what is a fairly routine save.
BOOKING: Nastasic is the latest name to go in the book for a block on McManaman. Wigan have a free kick in a dangerous position out on the right side...
OFF THE BAR! Maloney takes the free kick and whips it over everyone and off the top of the crossbar. Did he mean it? Who knows, but City live to fight another day. It's worth noting that the rain has started falling pretty heavily in these last few minutes.
City are starting to pile on the pressure now as Toure's shot is deflected out for a corner, which Joel Robles collects. Wigan still fancy themselves on the break...
Wigan make a change now as Ben Watson
come on for Jordi Gomez. The Spanish midfielder hasn't had his most effective game for the Latics this afternoon, it must be said.
RED CARD! Manchester City are reduced to 10 men as Pablo Zabaleta becomes the third man in FA Cup final history to be sent off. He took down McManaman when the winger was through on goal and there can be no arguments about the decision from Andre Marriner to award a second yellow card to the Argentine.
In case you were wondering, the other two men to get sent off in FA Cup finals were Kevin Moran for Manchester United against Everton in 1985 and Jose Antonio Reyes for Arsenal against Manchester United in 2005.
BOOKING: Another City player goes into the book as Gareth Barry picks up a yellow card for bringing down Maloney. Only a few minutes left of normal time now and it's starting to get very tense inside Wembley Stadium. Can Wigan capitalise on their numerical advantage?
GOAL! MAN CITY 0-1 WIGAN (WATSON)
OH MY WORD! Wigan have taken the lead in the 90th minute and it's substitute Ben Watson who has scored the goal! The midfielder got in front of his man to head Maloney's corner past Hart and into the net and the Wigan end has gone bananas!
FULL TIME: MAN CITY 0-1 WIGAN
The full-time whistle goes and Wigan Athletic have won the FA Cup final for the first time in their history. They have become the second team after Wimbledon in 1988 to lift the famous trophy in their first final appearance. Just when you think the FA Cup is all out of shocks this happens. Wow. Just wow.
The Wigan fans are in disbelief but their side are fully deserving of this triumph today. The Latics were superb right from the opening minute, outplaying City for large parts of the match with their dynamism and confidence. This is sure to do wonders as they bid for Premier League survival.
Anyway, that's all from me for now. However, you can catch all of the reaction from the players and managers of both sides right here on Sports Mole. Thank you very much for your company and enjoy the rest of you weekend. Goodbye!