Barnsley: Kennedy inspired for Manchester City match

Tom Kennedy
Tom Kennedy
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TOM Kennedy has no doubts that tonight’s FA Cup quarter-final clash with Manchester City is the biggest game of his career.

Barnsley defender Kennedy played in the 2008 League Two Play-Off final for Rochdale when they lost 3-2 to Stockport County at Wembley.

And although that was a great occasion to be involved in, even though Dale lost, Kennedy is targeting a return to the home English football almost five years after his first visit to the famous stadium.

“It’s the biggest game of my career without doubt,” Kennedy told The Star.

“I’ve played at Wembley before in a play-off final and it really was an amazing occasion, but unfortunately we lost the game.

“We were 3-1 down, scored a late goal with about ten minutes to go, but we just couldn’t force extra-time.

“To be fair Stockport played very well that day and we weren’t at our best, but it would be brilliant if I got the chance to play at Wembley again.”

Defending Premier League champions were definitely going to be without their skipper Vincent Kompany and striker Sergio Aguero for this weekend’s mouth-watering clash, the Reds’ most high-profile game since famously reaching the FA Cup semi-finals back in 2008.

Kompany has missed the Blues’ last six games with a calf problem and won’t be risked, while Argentinean marksman Aguero has a knee injury which forced him to miss Monday night’s 1-0 win over Aston Villa.

Striker Carlos Tevez was also a major doubt after he was arrested by Cheshire Police yesterday on suspicion of driving while disqualified. It remained to be seen whether he would be available to face the Reds at the Ethiad Stadium.

But whichever team City boss Robert Mancini fields, Kennedy knows the Championship side will have a real test on their hands.

“It’s crazy really that we’re going to be playing against players like Yaya Toure, David De Silva and someone like Carlos Tevez,” admitted Kennedy.

“These are the players you watch on Match of the Day on a Saturday night.

“But we can’t afford to get carried away and show them too much respect. We’ve got to get in their faces and ruffle their feathers.

“We know they’ve got players who will hurt you, but we’ve got to be calm and calculated.”