Midfielder Ryan Tunnicliffe is relishing the visit of his former club and five-time League Cup winners Manchester United ahead of tonight’s match at Kenilworth Road.
The fixture will be the first meeting between the two clubs since April 1992 and Tunnicliffe – a boyhood United fan – has all the motivation he needs going into the match.
Just short of eight years to the day, the now 27-year-old made his United debut in tonight’s competition – then named Capital One Cup – and spoke with great pride after coming off the bench against Newcastle United.
“The biggest moment of pride for me was obviously making my debut. I’d worked ten years to get to that point. I was a boyhood supporter and all my hard work paid off.
“It was a massive moment for me and one I look back on with great honour because not too many kids get to do that. There are probably millions that want to do it and I’m one of the lucky ones that got the chance.”
Now though, his loyalty lies with the Hatters and the midfielder spoke about the feeling around the club at the moment.
“Confidence is high, carrying on from last season, we finished the season quite well which kept us in the league. It’s just about momentum for us really, winning as many games as possible, a good cup run will breed confidence for the league, so hope to keep it going.
“We miss the fans, they’d be buzzing, especially the way we finished last season, the Kenny would have been rocking with some of those results, so it’s a big shame, but hopefully they can be back soon.”
Tunnicliffe played the full 90 minutes in the second round against Reading last week but is keen to carry on impressing in the cup with the hope of making his way into the starting line-up for league matches too.
“That’s the goal, I didn't play the last five games of the season and we won quite a lot of them and it kept us in the league, so all credit to the lads. I've just got to be patient, when I get my chance, I’ve got to take it, train hard, do all the right stuff, be professional and when I get my chance take it, because as a footballer I want to play every game I can play and with the week being the most important, I want to be in that team.
“The place is buzzing, momentum is a big thing in football, so last year when we were going through a rough patch, no matter how well we played, it seemed we’d always probably lose 1-0 or by the odd goal as the momentum was against us, so it’s nice to be in a team and a squad where the momentum is with us at the minute, we have to keep working hard to keep it that way and then hopefully we can do great things this season.”