‘We played for him and his family’: Pep Guardiola and his stars dedicate Carabao Cup derby win to Manchester City legend Colin Bell following his death, as boss states club must ‘defend his legacy’
- Manchester City overcame rivals Manchester United to win 2-0 at Old Trafford
- Carabao Cup win sees them move into the final for a fourth year in a row
- Manager Pep Guardiola dedicated win to Colin Bell who died on Tuesday
- Goal scorer John Stones also took time out to dedicate win to the club legend
Pep Guardiola and his players dedicated their victory in the Manchester derby to the late Colin Bell as they stayed on course to lift the Carabao Cup for the fourth year in a row last night.
Manchester City beat neighbours United 2-0 in the semi-final at Old Trafford to set up a Wembley date with Tottenham in April.
It came a day after City legend Bell passed away at the age of 74, and the team wore retro No 8 shirts in honour of one of the club’s greatest ever players.
Pep Guardiola dedicated Manchester City’s Carabao Cup victory over Manchester United to club legend Colin Bell who sadly passed away on Tuesday
‘We played for him and his family,’ said Guardiola, who also wore a T-shirt in tribute to Bell.
‘This person helps to build something special and that is the club we have – to beat United away is for you.
‘It was a sad day for all the Manchester City family. Colin Bell has a stand (named after him) at the Etihad because he was something special.
‘Today it was remarkable what we achieved but we dedicate the victory to Colin Bell and his family, and the Manchester City fans who miss him a lot.
‘We have to play and defend legacies like Colin Bell and Mike Summerbee helped us to create at this incredible club.
City players warmed up with retro City shirts from Bell’s era where he starred in the 1970’s
All the retro match shirts, not worn during the game, featured Bell’s No 8 which he wore
‘Colin is a big loss. It’s sad news but we can continue and be incredibly proud of what these guys years ago created.
‘We don’t have as many trophies in the cabinet compared to some teams in England and Europe but Colin Bell creates this feeling.
‘So it is fantastic to go against rivals United at Old Trafford and play incredible football and win and go to Wembley again.’
Summerbee, who won City’s first League Cup alongside Bell in 1970, wept in the Old Trafford stands during a minute’s silence for his old teammate.
He saw John Stones score his first goal in more than three years and Fernandinho his first in more than two years as City struck twice in the second half for a deserved win.
‘How we played in this match was a reflection of him (Colin Bell),’ said Stones.
Bell sadly passed away at the age of 74 on Tuesday and is regarded as one of, if not, the greatest City players of all time
Manchester United and City stars paid their respects to Bell before kick-off in the derby
‘It was a great moment and I’m sure he was looking down on us. It is another final for us, another great occasion and a derby we’ve won against a top team so we are thoroughly pleased.’
Guardiola paid tribute to Stones who has resurrected his career at the Etihad after it looked as though he would leave the club.
‘All credit to him,’ said the City boss. ‘Football a long career and you always have ups and downs.
‘He struggled longer than we expected and he expected, but his comeback is absolutely down to him. We can say whatever we want to help him but hopefully he can continue in this way.
‘He came back and made another outstanding performance. But the most important thing he has been able to do is something he has struggled the last three or four years, playing five or six games in a row. This is so important for him especially and for us.’
City ran out 2-0 winners at Old Trafford with John Stones opening the scoring for the holders
Stones also dedicated City’s win to Bell following his match-winning contribution
Defeat for United meant they have lost four semi-finals in a year under Ole Gunnar Solskjaer, having gone out of the Carabao Cup to City at the same stage last season.
‘It’s not a mental thing but we need to be better, that’s the answer,’ said Solskjaer. ‘I think it’s some practice, some habits and some desire at times.
‘Sometimes you meet good teams in the semis and at the moment City are probably the best team in England.
‘When they play well you have to play very well to beat them, and we were just lacking that little bit.
‘City can score many great goals, you can accept that. When you concede two simple set-plays, it’s very disappointing. We weren’t good enough today.
‘After they scored I felt we had more of the ball and more pressure but we still couldn’t create enough.’
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