FA Cup - Hull set up final showdown with Arsenal after chaotic eight-goal semi

FA Cup semi-final, Wembley - Hull City 5 (Sagbo 42, Fryatt 49, Huddlestone 54, Quinn 67, Meyler 90+3) Sheff Utd 3 (Baxter 19, Scougall 44, Murphy 90)

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FA Cup - Hull set up final showdown with Arsenal after chaotic eight-goal semi
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Hull City's Tom Huddlestone celebrates scoring their third goal of the game

Hull City held off a spirited challenge from Sheffield United to reach the FA Cup final with a 5-3 win at Wembley.

The Premier League side were made to work for it by the Blades, who had gone in at the break 2-1 up. They had stunned Hull from the outset, displaying confidence and control, and their work was rewarded in the 19th minute as Jose Baxter turned home at the near post John Brayford’s ball in from the right.

Hull thought they would go in level at the break after Yannick Sagbo equalised in the 42nd minute, powering home Jake Livermore’s diagonal ball. But parity lasted for a handful of seconds, as Stefan Scougall took advantage of Jamie Murphy’s great run down the left flank which left Liam Rosenior bewildered, and buried the ball beyond Steve Harper.

Then two half-time substitutions turned the match for Hull as Matty Fryatt and Sone Aluko replaced Luis Figueroa and George Boyd. Fryatt pounced in the 49th minute, turning home a corner that United were unable to clear. He thought he’d put Hull ahead a couple of minutes later, but had been flagged offside.

It was Tom Huddlestone who managed it, with a sharp finish after a strong run down the middle and a neat one-two with David Meyler. Stephen Quinn extended the lead with a flying header from a Livermore cross.

Harry Maguire gave Sheffield United hope in the final minute of normal time, rifling home with three additional minutes left on the clock. But David Meyler wrapped up the win for Hull City, coolly slotting home after a powerful run.

KEY MOMENTS

19' - GOAL! Jose Baxter makes the breakthrough! Brayford, who's been sparky all afternoon so far, gets the ball in from the right, and Baxter seizes on it at the near post for his tenth goal of the season.

42' - GOAL! And there is the equaliser - perhaps not quite deserved, but a well-worked goal from Sagbo. A neat exchange of passes leaves Livermore with the option of a diagonal ball forward into the box for the striker to stroke home.

44' - GOAL! And an immediate response! Persistence from Jamie Murphy down the left, rounding Rosenior, and Scougall absolutely buries that into the net.

49' - GOAL! An immediate impact for Matty Fryatt! He scrambles it home from a corner that Sheffield United just can't clear.

54' - GOAL! And what a turnaround. Plus what a great finish from Tom Huddlestone! He makes a great run through the middle, plays a one-two with Meyler, and lofts it into the net.

67' - GOAL! Well, those Hull substitutions have been very wise ones. Beautiful run in from Livermore, squared across to Quinn in the middle, who heads home.

89' - GOAL! And Murphy belts it home after a diving header was batted back towards his feet. Can Sheffield United rally once more?

90'+3 - GOAL! And David Meyler settles it for Hull, on the break, and coolly slotting home.

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 KEY FACTS

Steve Bruce has never lost an FA Cup semi-final he has been involved in – three as a player, and this one as a manager.

This win puts Hull City in their first ever FA Cup final.

Sheffield United have now lost their last five FA Cup semi-finals (Leicester 1961, Sheffield Wednesday 1993, Newcastle United 1998 and Arsenal 2003).

Hull City have now won three of their last 18 meetings in all competitions with Sheffield United (W3 D7 L8).

TALKING POINT

Bruce's use of his bench. No great controversies in an FA Cup semi-final contested in the right manner, but it’s worth looking at Steve Bruce’s excellent use of substitutions that turned the game for Hull. Did Nigel Clough leave it too late to make his own changes?

MAN OF THE MATCH

Tom Huddlestone (Hull City): A cool and collected performance from the midfielder in the second half is enough to pick up this particular prize. 

PLAYER RATINGS

Hull City: Harper 7, Rosenior 8, Figueroa 6, Davies 7, Chester 7, Huddlestone 8, Meyler 7, Livermore 8, Boyd 6, Elmohamady 7, Sagbo 7. Subs: Quinn 7, Aluko 7, Fryatt 8.

Sheffield United: Howard 7, Harris 8, Brayford 8, Maguire 7, Flynn 7, Doyle 7, Baxter 7, Collins 7, Coady 7, Scougall 7, Murphy 7. Subs: Hill N/A, Porter 7, Davies 7.

THE MATCH IN A TWEET

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