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EFL Cup final review: Manchester United celebrate Wembley win

Manchester United have ended their six-year wait for a major trophy after claiming a 2-0 victory over Newcastle in the EFL Cup final at Wembley on Sunday.

A first-half header from Casemiro and a Sven Botman own goal sealed the victory for Erik ten Hag's side, who have lifted their first piece of silverware since winning the Europa League under Jose Mourinho in 2017.

Newcastle, supported by a vocal travelling support in the capital, pushed hard to try and work their way back into the contest, but lacked creativity in the final third, meaning their wait for a first domestic trophy since 1955 goes on.

United have strength, leadership and winning mentality

It has been a miraculous rise for United under ten Hag over recent months, as they have gone from a side that was thrashed 4-0 by Brentford in August to one that has won 17 and lost just one of their last 21 games, culminating in their trophy success at Wembley.

Ten Hag has installed discipline and belief in his squad, as well as a winning mentality that has been epitomised by summer signing Casemiro, who not only opened the scoring in the final, but produced an influential display that earned him the player of the match award.

The Brazil international won 18 major honours during his time with Real Madrid, including five Champions League successes, and he has brought that desire to win with him to Old Trafford - arguably making him the signing of the season in the Premier League.

Casemiro has been a star, but he was not the only warrior in red on Sunday, as the likes of Raphael Varane and Lisandro Martinez also shone in what was an impressive defensive display, while Marcus Rashford maintained his explosive form in the final third.

Rashford, who is 6/5 to score anytime in United's next match against West Ham in the FA Cup fifth round on Wednesday, thought he'd netted his 25th goal of the season at Wembley, but his deflected strike was later attributed as a Botman own goal.

Is the quadruple on?

The EFL Cup may be the first trophy United have won since 2017, but it could be the first of four they end up with come the end of the campaign.

The Red Devils are 8/13 to book their place in the quarter-finals of the FA Cup with a victory over West Ham in the week and they will fancy their 7/2 chances in the To Win Outright market for that competition as well, with the likes of Arsenal, Liverpool, Chelsea and Newcastle already eliminated.

Having already knocked Barcelona out of the Europa League, United are also still going strong on the continent, with a last-16 tie to come against Real Betis next month. Ten Hag's side are 5/2 favourites to go all the way in Europe's secondary club competition.

However, the final part of the quadruple - winning the Premier League - could be tough, as the Red Devils currently sit third in the standings, six points behind Manchester City and eight off leaders Arsenal, with both those sides having won this weekend.

United are 14/1 to end the season as champions of England for the first time since Sir Alex Ferguson's final campaign in charge in 2013.

Lack of spark a concern for Newcastle

Newcastle left everything out on the pitch at Wembley, but their first appearance in a major cup final since 1999 ultimately ended in disappointment, with United goalkeeper David de Gea having rarely been troubled.

Goals have become a concern for the Magpies over recent weeks, as they have netted just nine across their last 12 matches in all competitions, something manager Eddie Howe will be keen to rectify as he switches his side's focus back to the Premier League.

The Tynesiders have spent much of the season in the top four of the Premier League, but a run of one win in their last seven league games has seen them slip down to fifth and the gap between themselves and fourth-placed Tottenham was extended to four points earlier on Sunday after the latter's 2-0 victory over Chelsea.

Newcastle do have two games in hand on Spurs and a return to the Champions League remains a distinct possibility, with Howe's men priced at 6/4 in the To Finish in Top 4 market.

Next up for the Magpies is a trip to Manchester City next Saturday - a match they are priced at 5/1 to win in the Full Time Result market.

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