Steve Bruce is relishing Hull City’s label as outsiders for Saturday’s FA Cup with Budweiser Final against Arsenal and accepts the underdog tag as one of the best things about the famous old competition.
The Tigers have been priced out as far as 7/1 in the two-horse race with Gunners seen as overwhelming odds-on favourites.
However, in a tournament famed for its shocks and upsets, odds are there to be defied.
“Of course we’re rank outsiders for the weekend,” said Bruce.
“I think that is the actual beauty of the FA Cup. It’s like what we saw last year. Manchester City were huge favourites but Wigan went and won the thing.
“For me, things like that are why this is the greatest competition. There’s always been shocks and it’s a one-off game.
“Of course Arsenal are clear favourites on Saturday, but for a club like ours to take on the mighty Arsenal has a ring to it which is what the FA Cup is all about.
“The beauty of the competition is exactly what it is on Saturday. It’s the mighty Arsenal with all their history, tradition, huge support and a huge club against the smaller club and the attraction is the ability of the smaller club to turn them over.
“We have to hope that we can do that and we have every belief that we can. It’s a classic FA Cup tie – one of the big teams against one of the smaller teams. That brings a little bit of the glamour back to the competition along with what Wigan did last year.
“That said to me that we had a chance. We were never going to win the Premier League, but I asked if we could win six games in the FA Cup. We’ve won five so far. Can we add the sixth? It would be terrific if we could.”
Bruce believes his side’s appearance at Wembley last month in the semi-final will stand his players in good stead this week and says the stage is set for somebody to make themselves a Hull City hero.
“I think playing at Wembley in the semi-final has certainly helped us in terms of we know what to expect,” added Bruce.
“The semi-final was a wonderful occasion but the final will dwarf it. The reality is that it’s a one-off game.
“The FA Cup Final is a place where heroes are made. Who can be the hero and win us the cup? When we’re all growing up, that is what everybody dreams about.
“Everybody enjoys a shock in the FA Cup. Apart from Arsenal fans, I’m sure the rest of the world will be rooting for Hull.”