Nottingham Forest v Huddersfield Town: Liverpool the prize as Terriers eye piece of history

HISTORY beckons for Huddersfield Town this evening.

Huddersfield Town boss Carlos Corberan. Picture: PA
Huddersfield Town boss Carlos Corberan. Picture: PA

You have to go back half a century for the last time that the Terriers reached the quarter-final of the FA Cup following a feted 4-2 win over Bobby Moore’s West Ham at Leeds Road, with the dulcet tones of YTV commentator Keith Macklin providing a TV accompaniment to the action in February 1972.

Goals from Jimmy Lawson, Terry Dolan, Dave Smith and Frank Worthington secured Town a passage into the last eight on a dank day in the West Riding to set up a date with Birmingham City, a very accomplished side in the early 70s, then managed by a former Leeds United player in Freddie Goodwin.

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The incentive for the present-day Terriers is a home encounter with Jurgen Klopp’s Liverpool if they dispose of a Nottingham Forest side who have already beaten Leicester City and Arsenal in this year’s competition.

Tom Lees celebrates scoring Town's second goal in Friday's Championship win over Peterborough. Picture Bruce Rollinson

It is the sort of challenge that you should expect to sit well upon the shoulders of a Town side who are 18 matches unbeaten in all competitions since a 2-1 reverse to Middlesbrough at the John Smith’s Stadium on November 27.

Carlos Corberan’s side certainly have the wherewithal and mindset for the challenge in hand with a glamour tie with Liverpool being an intriguing poser, should Town prevail in the Midlands.

Not that head coach Corberan can be accused of being presumptuous in any way whatsoever.

He said: “We know it is going to be a difficult challenge, but every time you make steps in the history of one very big club who won this cup 100 years ago, it shows how important we are working. It increases our determination to play at the highest level we can.

“Every time you are on the pitch, you want to give the best as a team and compete to try and win the game.

“With one difference, in the cup competitions, it is all or nothing.

“As soon as you don’t compete, you don’t have another opportunity. You don’t get three points, it is all or nothing. We know we need to work very hard to progress.”

Town, who remain in second place in the Championship following the weekend action, beat Forest in the league fixture at the City Ground just after Christmas, should they need a source of inspiration ahead of their latest trip down the M1.

Not that Corberan is reading anything into that.

The Spaniard commented: “I think this is not going to help anything as we know how difficult it was to achieve this result and I know how difficult a team they are.

“They are well coached under Steve Cooper and it will be a high challenge. What we did in the past was part of the past. We need to show a lot of mentality, determination and hard work and many things to achieve what we want. To keep playing in the cup.”

Corberan has confirmed that loan keeper Jamal Blackman will feature in goal this evening, with outstanding number one Lee Nicholls likely to be handed a breather ahead of Town’s return to league action at West Bromwich on Friday.

He said: “If everything goes well, Blackman is going to play.

“I think it is important that when we arrive into the games, we have players who are fresh to impact the games and we will analyse which players head into the game in better condition. We will do this before Notingham Forest and West Brom.

“It is very easy to be focused on Forest. We are not going to be playing them (Liverpool) yet and need to be focusing on Forest, an opponent who will be very hard and difficult to beat to keep playing in the cup.”

Last six games: Nottingham Forest WWDDWD; Huddersfield Town DDWWWW.

Referee: G Ward (Surrey).

Last time: Forest 0 Hudddersfield 1, December 30, 2021; Championship.