Modest Matt Fryatt cannot quite believe he has helped fire Hull to an FA Cup Final - and admits it just is not the sort of thing that happens to him.
In fact Fryatt says, while watching the first half of today’s FA Cup semi-final at Wembley, he was having flashbacks to Hull’s horror show against Barnsley at the tail end of last season when the East Riding outfit nearly blew promotion to the Premier League.
“Barnsley were fighting for their lives and we just needed a point to go up and we all just froze on that day,” recalled Fryatt, “We had massive support that day just as we did today and that first half was like Barnsley on a bigger scale.”
“The dressing room was flat at half-time because we were struggling and we were thinking, ‘what are we going to do about it’.”
“Fortunately the substitutions have paid off and we managed to turn it round.”
Fryatt was one of those half-time changes and wasted no time in making his presence felt.
The former Walsall and Leicester City man struck within four minutes of taking to the field to return parity to proceedings and from there Hull never looked back.
The goal was Fryatt’s fourth in the competition and he joked afterwards that credit must go to his manager for bringing him on.
“It worked out well didn’t it? The perfect substitution” said Fryatt with a smile, “Sone Aluko made a big difference and Stephen Quinn got a goal too so the subs made a good contribution all around.”
Fryatt’s second half display was a clear contributing factor in Hull getting through to the FA Cup Final on 17 May.
But the striker says it has not yet dawned on him the role he has played in Hull making the first cup final in their history.
“I can’t believe I’m in a Cup final,” he told WembleyStadium.com, “To come on and it all change is a relief but I’m also thinking, ‘this shouldn’t really happen to me’.”
“To play in a stadium like this, to score a goal, to win and get to a final is the stuff you dream about. It’s a bit cheesy but I didn’t think it would happen to me.”