Swansea boss Michael Laudrup says Capital One Cup glory would rival any of his past wins
MICHAEL Laudrup admits League Cup glory at Swansea City would rival any of his past achievements — because this team are not expected to succeed.
Laudrup won a bucketload of medals during his glittering playing career.
And the Dane also got his hands on silverware during his early days as a coach at Brondby.
The closest he has come since then to a trophy was with Spanish minnows Getafe, who he took to the Copa Del Rey final in 2008 only to lose out to Valencia.
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Now Laudrup is eyeing the possibility of another big prize ahead of Swansea's Capital One Cup quarter-final with Middlesbrough at the Liberty.
If Swansea can see off the Championship promotion hopefuls, they will be in the semi-finals of a top-level cup competition for only the third time in their 100-year history. And they would be just two legs away from a maiden major final.
"I didn't know Swansea have never been to a final," Laudrup admitted, "but even if they had been, I knew it wasn't every five or six years.
"I won trophies with big teams, but that's different.
"One year you would get to the final and lose, the next you would get there and win or you would win the league. But at a smaller club — and I can say because of my experience at Getafe — it's fantastic if you can get to a final.
"It's different to play in a game when you know the winners will get a trophy.
"It's very special, and it would be fantastic for the players and the fans if we could do that."
Laudrup has indicated that he will once again make changes for this competition, but the feeling is that he will go with the bulk of the side which started against Norwich City in the Premier League last weekend.
Ashley Williams's one-match ban means one alteration is enforced, with Garry Monk and Kyle Bartley both contenders to take over in central defence.
"Garry has done very well in recent games for us," Laudrup said, "but I would like to see Kyle as well because of his injury."
It could be that both men start and Laudrup rests Chico Flores, while the likes of Dwight Tiendalli and Jazz Richards played in the last round at Liverpool.
Further forward, Leon Britton looks like being fit for selection after a knee injury forced him out of the Canaries defeat, but Pablo Hernandez is still not ready to return after suffering a recurrence of his thigh problem.
Michel Vorm continues to build towards a comeback, but Gerhard Tremmel will continue in goal this evening.
"This is an important competition to me," Laudrup added. "I said from the start that we would take it seriously. That doesn't mean we cannot make changes, but we have put a competitive team out in the previous rounds and we will do the same again in this game.
"If we can beat Middlesbrough, we are into the semi-finals. Then you start dreaming about Wembley."