Pep Guardiola saluted his Carabao Cup-winning Manchester City side as the club won the trophy for the third season running with victory over Aston Villa.
Sergio Aguero hit the opener for City at Wembley, before Rodri doubled their lead 10 minutes later to put Guardiola’s charges in a commanding position.
Mbwana Samatta then pulled one back just before half-time to keep Villa in the running and ensure an uncomfortable second half for City.
But despite some fierce attacking City kept their rivals at bay to take the Carabao Cup with a 2-1 victory.
And having also laid hands on the trophy in 2018 and 2019, Guardiola was delighted with this hat-trick of triumphs in the historically undervalued competition.
“Three times in a row is a big success. It’s the consistency, incredible,” he told Sky Sports after the final whistle.
“It was awesome. We struggled in the first minutes and the last ones. They had two clear chances in the first minutes but we played really well, especially in the second half.”
Sunday’s win comes hot on the heels of City’s comeback victory at the Bernabeu at the expense of Real Madrid, which puts the Premier League club in a strong position to qualify for the Champions League last 16.
While the league title is all but out of their grasp, Guardiola preferred to focus on the trophies for which his charges remain in the running or which they have lifted, as he singled out Phil Foden for special praise after the youngster was named man of the match at Wembley.
“The game was good. Phil was clinical. Big success, our second title of the season with the Community Shield, it’s so nice,” he added.
“We’ve won a lot. I tried when we arrive, every game we play we try to win it, every competition we try to win it, and three times in a row, being here and winning is great.”
This latest Carabao Cup marked Guardiola’s eighth trophy with City since taking over in 2016, with the club still active in both the Champions League and FA Cup and – mathematically at least – not yet out of the title race.
City visit Sheffield Wednesday in the FA Cup fifth round on Wednesday before travelling to Old Trafford next Sunday to take on rivals United.