Emanuel Pogatetz prays Boro escape FA Cup and League failure

06 March 2009 07:42
Boro reached the FA Cup final 12 years ago but not only lost the showpiece event but were relegated. This time, Pogatetz is convinced the competition can be the springboard to safety for the Premier League's second-bottom side. "There is no danger of us getting caught up in Cup fever but we can benefit from it," Pogatetz said ahead of Sunday's quarter-final at Everton.

"We saw it against Liverpool last weekend. We would not have beaten them without beating West Ham in the Cup. We can get confidence out of this competition and it is great for the supporters. It is good for us and the club that we are still in it and is something we can be proud of.

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"We are aware of what happened in 1997 but do not think about it. The threat of relegation is there and has been for quite a long time but all we are thinking of is how to get out of it. We can avoid it."

The Austrian is relishing the chance to play at Wembley should Boro prosper at Goodison Park.

"To lead a team out at Wembley would be a dream come true because I have not played there yet," Pogatetz said. "It would give all of us a lift. So we take it seriously. We can really looking forward to tie because there is a big prize."

Pogatetz, 26, is still haunted by the memory of Boro's shock 2-0 defeat by Cardiff in the quarter-final a year ago at the Riverside. "That still hurts because we missed a great opportunity to maybe go on to the final and win it but hopefully, we can make up for it this year," Pogatetz said.

"We can use that disappointment as motivation. Everton on paper are a lot harder to beat than Cardiff but Cardiff showed they can beat a better team and maybe we can do what they did to us last season.

"The whole club was shell-shocked after that defeat. It was just a horrible feeling going out the way we did. Those days happen in football and hopefully, we can make up for it this season, I am still not over that defeat.

"It was so bad for me that I did not watch the FA Cup final, the first one I can remember missing. Instead, I went out for a walk. I just did not want to see how other teams progressed once we went out because it made it even worse."


Source: Telegraph