THE waiting is finally over and the big day draws ever nearer.
Premiership survival remains far more important in my eyes but I naturally want to win and hope fervently that, irrespective of the outcome, the Lads play well and give the fans and everyone associated with the club a day and performance to be proud of.
I was unable to secure a ticket in 1973 and all subsequent Wembley trips have ended in disappointment although the Charlton play-off final will live forever in the memory.
Gus is hinting that he still needs to make his mind up over a couple of starting places leading me to think that Giaccherini is in with a chance of starting and he doesn’t know yet whether to start with Fletcher or perhaps play Borini up front, to the exclusion of Altidore.
Fans who are old enough to remember 1985 will recall Len Ashurst making the fateful decision to leave out Colin West. Hopefully Gus will be inspired to make the right call and we can invoke the spirit of ’73.
If we do win, everyone will be heroes but, for me, success is likely to depend on top performances from Cattermole, Mannone and the correct call over who plays up front – not forgetting a fair hand from referee Mr Atkinson. Dare to dream!
Prediction: Sunderland 1 Man City 0