Carl McHugh wants Motherwell to top his Wembley experience

Carl McHugh hopes the second major cup adventure of his career can end in glory as Motherwell bid to win a semi-final against Rangers for the first time in their history.
Motherwell's Carl McHugh. Picture: SNSMotherwell's Carl McHugh. Picture: SNS
Motherwell's Carl McHugh. Picture: SNS

He made it all the way to Wembley with Bradford City in 2013 when they were a fourth-tier side.

McHugh, right, and the Bantams were unfortunately thumped 5-0 by Swansea in the League Cup final but the memories are still fresh.

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He said: “It was a magical run. We beat Arsenal and Aston Villa over two legs. I don’t think it’ll be as big a shock on Sunday if we win.

“It was brilliant and something I will always have with me, but I’d like to go one step further this time and win the cup.

“I scored in the semi-final first leg against Villa so that was absolutely brilliant.

“I took a lot of fans to the game, I think half of Donegal were there. It was great for me and my family that everyone managed to get over for the game.

“I don’t think we can read anything into the stat that Motherwell have never beaten Rangers in a semi.

“The main thing when you play in these big games is not to play the occasion. You need to play the game and play what’s in front of you.

“You need to do what you’re good at and execute the game plan. We know how we play and what we are good at and the key points in the performance is what we’re focusing on.

“It’s a short career and you don’t get opportunities like this that often.

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“It goes so quick but I don’t think it adds to the pressure as we are really looking forward to it and we have worked hard to get to this stage of the cup.

“We had a great win at Ross County when Ross McLean came on and scored in extra time and we had a good performance against Aberdeen in the quarters. We are looking to carry that on and will need a big performance on Sunday but we are confident we can produce it.”

Perhaps fatefully Motherwell began this year’s tournament at Hampden in a group game against Queen’s Park.

McHugh added: “We did say at that time that we wanted to be back at Hampden. Now we want to add another date.”