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Clough on a high over semis date

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Sheffield United manager Nigel Clough. Photo: Nick Potts/ PA Wire.

Sheffield United manager Nigel Clough. Photo: Nick Potts/ PA Wire.

Sheffield United manager Nigel Clough. Photo: Nick Potts/ PA Wire.

SHEFFIELD UNITED manager Nigel Clough did his best to deflect all attention from himself after leading his side to the semi-finals of the FA Cup after a 2-0 win against Charlton.

Scottish winger Ryan Flynn and on-loan Derby defender John Brayford struck second-half goals in the space of two minutes to seal the Blades a place in the last four for the first time since 2003.

Clough (left) arrived at Bramall Lane in October not long after being sacked by Derby with the club lying second from bottom in League One.

A 2-0 win against Peterborough on Tuesday was their eighth straight win in all competitions – they are now 11th – and a ninth consecutive victory has ensured they become the first club from the third tier to reach the semi-finals of the competition since Wycombe in 2001.

"There's not an awful lot of satisfaction for me personally," said Clough, a losing finalist at Wembley in the 1991 FA Cup final as a player with Nottingham Forest.

"I don't have a chart at home where you rank the games. I don't honestly, it's not about that.

"It's about the players and supporters, especially this, celebrating together."

The Blades have beaten Aston Villa, Fulham and Nottingham Forest in previous rounds and the momentum was clearly with them in front of a sell-out Bramall Lane crowd of 30,040.

"We were nervous in the first 20 minutes and it was important to get in 0-0 at half-time," Clough added.

"The atmosphere, it saps you when you're not used to it and a lot of players playing in this sort of thing for the first time, this atmosphere takes your energy and it takes your breath away at times.

"To get to this stage as a League One club in the semi-final is an incredible achievement."


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