Nigel Clough hails Sheffield United’s cup effort

Sheffield United boss Nigel Clough

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Sheffield United boss Nigel Clough has heaped praise on his players after they beat Southampton 1-0 to reach the semi-finals of the Capital One Cup.

Tempers flared at Bramall Lane as Saints boss Ronald Koeman refused to shake Clough’s hand after the final whistle.

Marc McNulty scored the only goal of the game in the 63rd minute when he turned home a free-kick from Bob Harris.

A fumble from Fraser Forster helped McNulty’s cause and the Blades managed to hold on for a famous victory.

Saints’ night got worse when Florin Gardos was dismissed in the 89th minute for denying a goal-scoring opportunity.

The Blades, 21.00 to win League One, reached the semi-finals of FA Cup last season before being beaten by Hull City and Clough insisted his players deserved to progress on Tuesday night.

He said: “For Sheffield United, the supporters, the team, a very memorable evening.

“We have won some good cup ties in the past 12 months but I think that is probably up there at the top of the list. We would have settled for a 1-0 I think, but we probably should have had a second goal tonight.

“It was a remarkable effort by the players. The 14 lads we had out there gave absolutely everything.

“The players love playing teams from higher leagues. I think they relish it, I don’t think it daunts them, and we do look forward to these type of evenings.”

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