ELATED Sunderland supporters admitted they are struggling to come down from the high of their team booking a first Wembley cup final date in more than two decades.
The Black Cats will face Manchester City in the Capital One Cup final on March 2, after overcoming Manchester United on penalties at Old Trafford.
In dramatic scenes, goalkeeper Vito Mannone was the Wearsiders’ hero, saving from the Red Devils’ Rafael Da Silva, to send 9,000 travelling supporters into ecstacy.
Despite the fact that they will be big underdogs, Sunderland are just 90 minutes from winning their first silverware in more than four decades.
Looking back at the historic night, editor of fanzine A Love Supreme, Martyn McFadden, said: “I’ve never hugged as many strangers at a game, and I’ve never seen as many grown men cry as I did on Wednesday night.
“I have to admit I had tears in my eyes myself at the end. The fans were excellent and we all can’t wait for Wembley.”
Martyn added: “The players and Gus Poyet have done fantastically well and let’s hope they can do us proud in the final.
“We need to enjoy these moments because, as Sunderland fans, they only seem to come around once in decades.
“If we come away with a trophy it will be fantastic, because I think it’s time to move on from the FA Cup win in 1973, as much as it was an amazing achievement.
“A lot of our fans now weren’t even born when we got to the FA Cup final in 1992, so hopefully this can be the start of a new era of success for the club.”
Editor of Red and White Lite fanzine Mal Robinson described the cup tie as “amazing”.
“The game had everything and I am still coming to terms with it all to be honest,” he said.
“I’m covered in cuts and bruises from celebrating and have no voice but I would not change it for the world.
“Maybe our name is on the cup this year.”
Sunderland Minster vicar, Reverend Chris Howson, said: “You talk about praying, but I was on my knees during the penalty shoot-out because it was that dramatic.
“The boys really battled and it’s going to be great for them and the fans to go to Wembley.”
Mackem exile Daniel McNally says he will be travelling all the way from Australia to come to the final, which he reckons will cost him $3,500.
Daniel, originally from Sunderland, missed just one league game in almost a decade, but emigrated to Perth in late 2012.