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INTERVIEW: Make the fans happy

4 January 2014

Pascal Chimbonda ahead of the FA Cup third round game

Defender Pascal Chimbonda spoke to us ahead of the FA Cup third round tie against Sunderland at the Friday afternoon press conference. 

"It's a great chance for all of the lads to play in a big game," he said. "Anything can happen in the FA Cup and everyone will want to be a part of that. I've obviously played in the Stadium of Light before during my six month spell there and it's a great stadium. We'll all be going there to get a result. 

"We always perform well against the bigger teams and I don't think Sunday will be any different. The pressure is all on Sunderland so we'll go there and play our football. Hopefully we'll get a result. It would be great for the fans for us to get a draw and bring them back over here for another game." 

"Sunderland are struggling in the Premier League so we do fancy our chances," he admitted. "It's 90 minutes of football with 11 against 11 so anything can happen. We know they are still very good players and they're in the Premier League for a reason, so it will be a very difficult game. 

"I think if we stay compact and play our football we'll give them a tough day. It's a good game for all of the lads because it gives us a chance to test ourselves against one of the top teams in the country and to see how far we can go. It we can put a good performance in against Sunderland it will stand us in good stead for the rest of the season."

"The FA Cup is a great competition," he continued. "It gives players in the lower league a chance to show they can play at a higher level. It's a good opportunity for the club to earn some money and for the fans to go to a fantastic stadium. I'm sure everyone will enjoy the experience but we'll be looking to get a good result as a team. 

"We'll go into the game respecting Sunderland but we definitely won't fear them. We'll compete for every ball and make sure Sunderland know they're in for a tough afternoon. I don't think I ever got past the third round of the FA Cup at any of my other clubs, I always seemed to do better in the League Cup, so maybe Sunday will be the first time. It isn't only about me though. It will be a whole team effort and we'll go out and do our best because we all want to make the fans happy." 

"It will be difficult for the players who haven't played in front of a big crowd before but I think it will be a good experience for everyone," he added. "It's a good opportunity for us all to show that we can compete against the best players. I think if we play with confidence then we'll cause Sunderland some problems.

"It's a big game for us and once we're on the pitch we'll give everything we've got to try and win. It was a great draw for everyone connected to the club but we all play football to win games. There's no reason why we can't go to the Stadium of Light and get a result." 

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