Gus Poyet's Sunderland are rightly proud of their feat in getting to the Capital One Cup final, knocking out Manchester United after one of the most bizarre penalty shoot outs ever seen.
Some clubs who’ve reached the final of this competition in recent years, and even a few who’ve won it, could be said to have been helped along by favourable draws, and in particular some questionable team selections from opponents.
But Sunderland have knocked out three clubs currently in the top half of the Premier League to get to Wembley, including a strong Chelsea team in the fifth round, and now United, who named just about the best side they could.
Whatever happens against Manchester City on March 2nd though, Sunderland fans of a certain age won’t need reminding that when they last reached the final of this competition 29 years ago, both they and their opponents Norwich ended the season being relegated.
And although Norwich made an immediate return to the top flight, Sunderland were relegated again two years later, to what was then known as the Third Division.
Sunderland were beaten that day, and it remains a source of debate whether the winning goal was scored by Asa Hartford, or an own goal by defender Gordon Chisholm.
You can judge for yourself here…