Sheffield United 2 Charlton Athletic 0 match report: 'Wembley is not just going to be a day out,' says Nigel Clough

Goals from Ryan Flynn and John Brayford give the League One side victory

bramall lane

Nigel Clough insisted Sheffield United’s trip to Wembley next month would be more than a day out to reward his players for their giantkilling FA Cup run.

United became the first third-tier side to reach the semi-finals of the Cup since Wycombe Wanderers were beaten by Liverpool at Villa Park in 2001. Clough’s team have knocked out Premier League sides Aston Villa and Fulham as well as Nottingham Forest and now Charlton from the Championship.

Now another top-flight side, Hull City, stand between them and the final itself. Two goals in as many second-half minutes ended Charlton’s dreams in front of a crowd of 30,000 inside a raucously atmospheric Bramall Lane.

“You go to the seaside for a day out, not to Wembley,” Clough said. “If you look at the teams left, it is a little bit scary. It is about the financial boost for the club and everybody enjoying Wembley. But we will be giving it a go and trying to get to the final.

“To get to this stage as a League One side is an incredible achievement and we have not had easy draws along  the way.”

Clough’s in-form team, who have also won six consecutive league matches to climb away from the League One relegation battle, struggled at first to make any impact against Chris Powell’s side, who beat Sheffield Wednesday in the fifth round to scupper plans for a Steel City Cup derby.

John Brayford celebrates after doubling the Blades' advantage (GETTY) John Brayford celebrates after doubling the Blades' advantage (GETTY) Charlton organised themselves defensively to play a containing game and the home side were limited to a few half-chances in the opening 45 minutes. Diego Poyet, the 18-year-old midfielder whose father is Sunderland manager Gus Poyet, played with impressive maturity in a holding midfield role.

Clough blamed nerves for the slow start. “A lot of these lads have not experienced the kind of atmosphere they had today and it takes your breath away sometimes when you are not used to it,” he said.

But when Charlton began to push higher up in the second half, the Blades were able to counter-attack effectively and winger Ryan Flynn gave them the lead after 65 minutes, getting in behind Charlton’s defence to convert an inswinging cross by Jose Baxter.

Less than two minutes later Jamie Murphy stormed through on the left and pulled the ball back to find full-back John Brayford on the edge of the penalty area. His shot would have tested Charlton goalkeeper Ben Hamer but in the event took a deflection, wrong-footing him totally.

Clough, who played on the losing side in the 1991 Cup final for Forest, said the personal satisfaction he draws from this win is small next to that of the players, and pales in comparison with what it means to the club, who will bank around £2million by reaching the last four.

But, having been surprisingly sacked by Derby County in September, the way he has revived the fortunes of a side who were facing a prospective relegation battle when he succeeded David Weir a month later has been enormously impressive.

Charlton could have gone in front shortly before United scored when Marcus Tudgay’s pull-back found Callum Harriott unmarked, only for the Charlton forward to drag the ball wide of an open goal.

“We had the chance to break the deadlock and did not take it and that was the game changer,” a disappointed Powell said. “Whether it was the enormity of the occasion or not, I don’t know, but we could not give our fans what they wanted and that’s tough to take. We didn’t play as well as we can.”

News
people
News
people And here is why...
News
peopleStella McCartney apologises over controversial Instagram picture
Life and Style
Laid bare: the Good2Go app ensures people have a chance to make their intentions clear about having sex
techCould Good2Go end disputes about sexual consent - without being a passion-killer?
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Arts and Entertainment
Richard Burr remains the baker to beat on the Great British Bake Off
tvRichard remains the baker to beat as Chetna begins to flake
News
i100
Sport
footballArsenal 4 Galatasaray 1: Wenger celebrates 18th anniversary in style
Arts and Entertainment
Amazon has added a cautionary warning to Tom and Jerry cartoons on its streaming service
tv
News
people
News
The village was originally named Llansanffraid-ym-Mechain after the Celtic female Saint Brigit, but the name was changed 150 years ago to Llansantffraid – a decision which suggests the incorrect gender of the saint
newsWelsh town changes its name, but can you spot the difference?
Arts and Entertainment
Kristen Scott Thomas in Electra at the Old Vic
theatreReview: Kristin Scott Thomas is magnificent in a five-star performance of ‘Electra’
News
Destructive discourse: Jewish boys look at anti-Semitic graffiti sprayed on to the walls of the synagogue in March 2006, near Tel Aviv
peopleAt the start of Yom Kippur and with anti-Semitism flourishing, one Jew can no longer ignore his identity
Life and Style
Couples who boast about their relationship have been condemned as the most annoying Facebook users
tech
Arts and Entertainment
Hayley Williams performs with Paramore in New York
musicParamore singer says 'Steal Your Girl' is itself stolen from a New Found Glory hit
News
i100
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

Bleacher Report

Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Day In a Page

Italian couples fake UK divorce scam on an ‘industrial scale’

Welcome to Maidenhead, the divorce capital of... Italy

A look at the the legal tourists who exploited our liberal dissolution rules
Time to stop running: At the start of Yom Kippur and with anti-Semitism flourishing, one Jew can no longer ignore his identity

Time to stop running

At the start of Yom Kippur and with anti-Semitism flourishing, one Jew can no longer ignore his identity
Tom and Jerry cartoons now carry a 'racial prejudice' warning on Amazon

Tom and Jerry cartoons now carry a 'racial prejudice' warning on Amazon

The vintage series has often been criticised for racial stereotyping
An app for the amorous: Could Good2Go end disputes about sexual consent - without being a passion-killer?

An app for the amorous

Could Good2Go end disputes about sexual consent - without being a passion-killer?
Llansanffraid is now Llansantffraid. Welsh town changes its name, but can you spot the difference?

Llansanffraid is now Llansantffraid

Welsh town changes its name, but can you spot the difference?
Charlotte Riley: At the peak of her powers

Charlotte Riley: At the peak of her powers

After a few early missteps with Chekhov, her acting career has taken her to Hollywood. Next up is a role in the BBC’s gangster drama ‘Peaky Blinders’
She's having a laugh: Britain's female comedians have never had it so good

She's having a laugh

Britain's female comedians have never had it so good, says stand-up Natalie Haynes
Sistine Chapel to ‘sing’ with new LED lights designed to bring Michelangelo’s masterpiece out of the shadows

Let there be light

Sistine Chapel to ‘sing’ with new LEDs designed to bring Michelangelo’s masterpiece out of the shadows
Great British Bake Off, semi-final, review: Richard remains the baker to beat

Tensions rise in Bake Off's pastry week

Richard remains the baker to beat as Chetna begins to flake
Paris Fashion Week, spring/summer 2015: Time travel fashion at Louis Vuitton in Paris

A look to the future

It's time travel fashion at Louis Vuitton in Paris
The 10 best bedspreads

The 10 best bedspreads

Before you up the tog count on your duvet, add an extra layer and a room-changing piece to your bed this autumn
Arsenal vs Galatasaray: Five things we learnt from the Emirates

Arsenal vs Galatasaray

Five things we learnt from the Gunners' Champions League victory at the Emirates
Stuart Lancaster’s long-term deal makes sense – a rarity for a decision taken by the RFU

Lancaster’s long-term deal makes sense – a rarity for a decision taken by the RFU

This deal gives England a head-start to prepare for 2019 World Cup, says Chris Hewett
Ebola outbreak: The children orphaned by the virus – then rejected by surviving relatives over fear of infection

The children orphaned by Ebola...

... then rejected by surviving relatives over fear of infection
Pride: Are censors pandering to homophobia?

Are censors pandering to homophobia?

US film censors have ruled 'Pride' unfit for under-16s, though it contains no sex or violence