City captain entered the record books as he scored the fastest goal in FA Cup final history, crashing home an exquisite volley after 12 seconds.
United, seeking to win both domestic cups in the same season for the first time and wreck City’s hopes of emulating their own historic 1999 treble, levelled against the run of play when Bruno Fernandes tucked in a penalty.
But Gundogan restored City’s lead with another volley seven minutes after the interval and Pep Guardiola’s side resisted late pressure to win the trophy for a seventh time.
Mike McGrath assesses their star performers on Saturday afternoon.
Manchester City (4-3-3)
Looked confident with the ball at his feet after getting the nod to carry on for cup competitions. Sent wrong way for Bruno’s penalty. 6/10
Had the pace to match Sancho when they were on a foot race for ball. He positioned well and slipped into a back three when City attacked. 7/10
Good battle with Rashford where he tried to impose himself quickly and show his pace over a short distance. Good presence at the back and got his head on balls. 7/10
Started in a flat-back four at kick-off but moved forward as a defensive midfielder and was comfortable receiving the ball and turning before starting moves. 8/10
Left-back had to be alert to United trying to attack down City’s left and he put in a solid display, battling with Wan-Bissaka and Bruno. 6 /10
Has such positional intelligence, covering off opponent’s runs but also moving the ball quickly. Has physical presence from set-pieces and sent header wide. 7/10
Took just 13 seconds for his opener and his second volley had precision to get past De Gea. Aside from goals his passes opened up United. 9 /10
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Superb set-piece delivery, which saw him assist for Gundogan’s second goal. Carried ball forward and created for his team-mates. 7/10
Pushed out wide on right and struggled to get in the game, even though his positioning meant he was stretching United. Good energy for his team. 6 /10
Used his power to create chances for himself and was also effective winning the ball back from his team. Difficult for United to control him. 6/10
Very unlucky on penalty as there was no intention of handling the ball. Good battle with Wan-Bissaka and kept running at him but some of his runs ended up being frustrated. 6/10
Subs: Foden 76 (De Bruyne), Ake 89 (Grealish), LAporte 90+5 (Walker)
Manchester United (4-2-3-1)
David De Gea
No chance with first goal but was slow to react for the second, which took two bounces before going in. Poor with feet and possibly hampered by knock in first half. 4/10
Tried to get forward as Untied fought their way back into the final. Added different dimension to United attacks and good one-on-one defending. 7/10
Struck by object from City end when celebrating goal. His clearance went to Gundogan from kick-off but goal was not his fault. 6 /10
Stabbed over from eight yards out after a corner fell his way, which was huge chance. Good battle with Haaland, hit bar late on. 6 /10
Kept Bernardo quiet on his flank but would have liked to have got up the pitch more to join attacks and get in crosses. 6/10
Disciplined from the Brazilian as he protected his defence , then passing got better later in game. His challenge on Akanji would have been punished in different circumstances. 6 /10
May have got away with a challenge on De Bruyne in the penalty area when the Belgian went over his challenge. Struggled to get rhythm in the game. 5 /10
Took his penalty well under intense pressure and celebrated wildly. Earlier guilty of losing possession in dangerous area. 7/10
Was slow to react to the danger for the opening goal. While his set pieces were good and he got his passes going, he did not dictate the game. 4/10
Kept running at City but was blocked off most times, even when he evaded the initial challenges. Will have wanted more crosses. 5/10
Was a threat to City with his running, even when it looked like lost causes and his dangerous running with the ball was one ways United looked to get back in game. 6/10