May 20 2013 Latest news:
By Tom Moore
Thursday, January 24, 2013
Millwall goalkeeper David Forde is hoping that the Lions can match the 2004 side and reach the final of the FA Cup and claim victory over a ‘wounded’ Aston Villa side.
The Republic of Ireland international has been part of final day, doing so with Cardiff in 2008, although the Bluebirds were beaten by Portsmouth on that day.
Since joining Millwall in 2008, the Lions have bowed out of the cup at the third round stage twice, the fourth round and reached the fifth round last year where they lost to Bolton.
“I was involved with the Cardiff team that reached the final of the FA Cup [vs Portsmouth in 2008]. It can be done,” Forde said.
“Since I’ve been at the club, we’ve had different agendas. The priority was getting out of League One and now we’re in the hunt for the play-offs.
“But the league has always taken priority and we’re all looking forward to a big game in the Cup.
“It’s a shame that the FA Cup has lost some of its charm through the years, but you see Bradford and even Swansea getting to the final of a Cup and it has reignited people’s passion for the Cup. You look at them and think: why not?”
The 2012/13 Capital One Cup has thrown up two surprise finalists in Swansea City and League Two side Bradford City, who beat tomorrow’s opponents Aston Villa over two legs, and Forde believes that the pairs achievements can be matched in the FA Cup.
“What Bradford did gives us hope that we can do the same,” he explained.
“Over two legs you wouldn’t expect Bradford to beat Villa, but we’re under no illusions.
“Villa are still a Premier League side with great quality and they will be wounded. We know we are in for a tough game.”
He added: “They are wounded at the moment and they’ll be looking to right the wrongs of Tuesday night.
“I watched the Bradford game and I thought Villa were the better side in the first half and should have been at least a couple of goals up.
“But fair play to Bradford, they stuck at it and took their chance.”
The Villans were booed off after the aggregate loss to the Bantams and sit just one place above the Premier League relegation zone with two wins in their last 10 games.
Despite this alarming run of form, Forde is not taking their opponents lightly and insists that his side are underdogs.
“We know Villa are struggling a bit,” he added. “They’re in a transitional period and going for younger players, but they still have plenty of quality there.
“That shouldn’t be underestimated. We are a unique club and under the Friday night lights there will be some added spice.
“The fans will be boisterous and hopefully preying on some of the younger players that are yet to experience the great atmosphere of the Den.
“We’ll be the underdogs and that suits us down to the ground.
“The fans will get right behind us tomorrow night and they’re very effective when they smell a bit of weakness.
“If there are 15,000 fans at the Den it will feel like 30,000 – I just hope it’s a memorable night for the Millwall fans.”
What is more important for Forde is seeing a response from his team-mates after their 2-0 defeat to Burnley last weekend.
“We’ve had a poor result in the Championship on Saturday,” he said.
“I wouldn’t say it’s a bonus game but it’s an opportunity to put the league aside and enjoy a great Cup match.
“It’s also an opportunity for the likes of John Marquis or Dany N’Guessan to take their chance in attack.”