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I never expected to reach a cup final in my debut season at the club but here we are up against Southampton in the final of the Capital One Cup. We reached the final last season against all odds only to slip up against Manchester City despite a positive start to the game. Now, we can rewrite the script and erase the ghosts of last season.
PRE MATCH THOUGHTS
Andy Sheriff (Sunderland Manager): “We’ve been looking forward to this day ever since the win over Swansea in the semi-finals. We may have experienced this final last season which may give us an advantage but that isn’t an excuse to think that it’s in the bag. We’re up against a difficult side in Southampton whose manager is vastly experienced in terms of winning trophies. It’s great for our fans to experience days like this after all the turmoil the club has faced over the years and it be even better if we brought the cup back home.”
Ronald Koeman (Southampton Manager): “If you said to me at the start of the season that we would sell almost our entire team, start afresh and reach a cup final, I would call you crazy. The Capital One Cup isn’t as valued as what the FA Cup is but it’s still a trophy nonetheless and one that we’re looking to win. Sunderland are a good side, they managed to steal a draw against us earlier in the season so we need to be weary of their attacking threat. Southampton has come a long way from the lower depths of League One and its days like this that the fans dream about and we’ll be doing everything possible to be crowned champions!”
THE ROAD TO WEMBLEY
TEAM LINE UPS
Sunday 1st March 2015: Capital One Cup Final
Southampton 1 Sunderland 2
Goals: Fletcher 28’ Alvarez 64’ Pelle 75’
Sunderland Subs: Ake > Vergini/ Wickham > Borini/ Lingard > Rodwell
Southampton Subs: Mane > Rodriguerz/ Pelle > Long
Man of the Match: Lee Cattermole (Sunderland)
We’ve did it!! Sunderland have finally won silverware for the first time since 1973 and have slayed the demons of last year. It’s pandemonium in Wembley Stadium right now with the Black Cats fans going absolutely mental and rightfully so. The camera cuts to club legends Nail Quinn and Kevin Phillips in one of the media suites beaming with pride whiles Matt Le Tissier is fighting back the tears! We couldn’t walk those famous Wembley stairs for whatever reason (fuck you EA Sports) so we had to settle with lifting the trophy on the pitch in a makeshift stage. I couldn’t help but smile when I heard our fans singing “Are you watching Newcastle?” but the songs turned into cheers when club captain John O’Shea lifted the Capital One Cup for all to see. The trophy was passed along so all the players had the chance to lift it but (not to stoke my ego or anything) the loudest cheers are reserved when I got the chance to lift it before passing it over to our man of the match, Lee Cattermole. The best was yet to come, an on-pitch interview with non-other than Chris Kamara!! Unbelievable, Jeff
“I’m buzzing for these fans. We’ve suffered so much over the years and many of them thought that days like this would never come. We learnt from our mistakes last time out and now it’s paid off and we’ll be competing in the Europa League next season! Brilliant! Absolutely brilliant, mate!”
Chris had more to ask but the interview was prematurely cut off after Steven Fletcher and Lee Cattermole poured a bucket of water over my head before being tossed up in the air by the rest of the squad. The first of (hopefully) many trophies.