Conor Coady geared up for FA Cup semi final

Conor Coady on the ball for Sheffield United during his loan spell from Liverpool

Conor Coady on the ball for Sheffield United during his loan spell from Liverpool

First published in Sport by

CONOR Coady is preparing for the biggest stage of his career as Sheffield United aim to make history in this weekend’s FA Cup semi final against Hull City.

The on-loan Liverpool midfielder will be playing under the Wembley arch for the first time in his career as he seeks to help the League One side continue their incredible FA Cup journey and reach their first FA Cup final in almost 80 years.

“I’ve been to Wembley before to watch Liverpool win the League Cup against Cardiff a couple of years ago but have never played there,” says the 21-year-old from Haydock.

United take on the Premier League side in the second semi final on Sunday, as they continue an FA cup fairytale which has seen them knock out higher division opposition in every round.

They had already seen off Premier League sides Aston Villa and Fulham before knocking out Championship sides Nottingham Forest and Charlton to reach the last four.

And the Blades have also seen a massive upturn in their league form over the past couple of months to sit comfortably in mid-table.

Coady puts this down to the confidence gained from their cup exploits.

“I think the FA Cup has definitely helped our league form, so hopefully on Sunday we can turn that around and take our league form into the semi final. We’ve been underdogs for most of our games so that is something which should definitely help us again.”

The former England under 20s captain has been a shining light at Bramall Lane, having established himself in the first team over the second half of the season.

“This has always been about me getting better as a player and improving,” said the former Rainford Ranger who will spend the whole season with the Blades after joining on an initial six-month loan, which has been extended twice.

“Nigel Clough’s been great for me, and has told me where he wants me to improve and encouraging me to make the off-the-ball runs and be a more attacking player.

“Seeing Liverpool doing so well and competing for the Premier League definitely spurs me on too. Brendan Rodgers also sent me a text about the cup game which was nice.”

Should the Blades defy the odds once more against Steve Bruce’s side it would be the club’s first FA Cup final appearance since 1936, and should Arsenal get past Wigan Athletic in Saturday’s semi final it would be a repeat fixture of the showdown 78 years ago.

“It’s obviously a huge game on Sunday and a massive occasion for Sheffield United and we’re really looking forward to it,” Coady added.

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