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Clough's wary of wounded Tottenham


Sheffield United manager Nigel Clough

Sheffield United manager Nigel Clough

Sheffield United manager Nigel Clough

Sheffield United boss Nigel Clough (below) has no doubt the cup upsets of the last few days will provide inspiration for his side in their League Cup semi-final second leg against Tottenham - but also that Spurs will now be on red alert about the prospect of becoming the latest giantkilling victims.

There were some major shocks sprung by lower-league clubs facing Premier League opposition in the FA Cup fourth round, most notably on Saturday when Sky Bet League One Bradford won 4-2 at Chelsea while Championship outfit Middlesbrough triumphed 2-0 at Manchester City.

And Clough, whose League One promotion-chasers go into Wednesday's clash against top-flight Tottenham at Bramall Lane 1-0 down in the tie, said: "I read some quotes from Bradford players saying the Friday night game, where Cambridge drew 0-0 at home against Manchester United, gave them inspiration and belief, and we are going to try to use the weekend in the same sort of way.

"But the other side of it is that I think it all will have put Spurs on high alert - if the first leg didn't already - that if you are not careful, lower-league teams can cause you a problem."

Clough's men are certainly no strangers to causing cup upsets themselves, the Blades having knocked out Premier League sides in Aston Villa and Fulham on their way to last season's FA Cup semi-finals, despatching another in QPR in the third round this term and seeing off two more in West Ham and Southampton during the current League Cup run.