Hull have reached the FA Cup final for the first time in its 110-year history as the Premier League side twice came from behind to beat third-tier club Sheffield United 5-3.
After winning world football’s oldest cup competition three times as a Manchester United player in the 1990s, Hull manager Steve Bruce will bring his team back to Wembley Stadium on May 17 for the final against 10-time winner Arsenal.
“If you had said 10 years ago that Hull will play Arsenal in the FA Cup final, people would have been scratching their heads,” Bruce said.
“It just shows you what can be done.”
Hull is now just one game away from emulating Wigan’s surprising run to the title last year.
But the team will need to improve vastly on its first-half performance in order to win the club’s first major trophy after United – which won the last of its four FA Cups in 1925 and last played in the Premier League in the 2007 – twice led at the national stadium.
Hull was transformed after half-time, with Matty Fryatt restoring parity at 2-2 before Tom Huddlestone and Stephen Quinn gave the northeast team what appeared to be a comfortable cushion.
Even though Jamie Murphy pulled a late goal back for United, David Meyler quickly responded to secure Hull’s first trip to a major final.
“We were very sloppy in the first half and didn’t get going,” Meyler said.
“We got together at half-time and regrouped. It’s fantastic.”
If Hull does manage to etch its name onto the FA Cup, it won’t be the one Hull owner Assem Allam wants to see.
The Egyptian businessman was rebuffed by the FA earlier this week in his attempt to change Hull City to Hull Tigers, a name he believes would help the team earn more international fans and exposure.
Winning the Cup – and qualifying for the Europa League – could have the same effect.