Birmingham defender David Murphy has admitted he is dreaming of playing at Wembley after fearing his career was finished just a year ago.
The Blues left-back was out for the entire season in the last campaign following a ruptured knee cap, and has had to play as back-up to first-choice Liam Ridgewell since returning.
Despite being in the squad for his team's heroic 2-1 win over Arsenal at the national stadium, Murphy did not get on the pitch, but is in line to start in their FA Cup quarter-final clash against Bolton on Saturday.
"I did wonder if I would ever get back fully fit again," he said.
"When the injury initially happened, it was at the end of the season so you've just got to go away and recuperate.
"But I would say after Christmas time just over a year ago, when I was looking to push back in the side and had a setback, that was the worst part.
"There were a couple of setbacks along the way and I spoke to the surgeon but thankfully we resolved the problem and, touch wood, I haven't had a problem with the knee for a year now.
"For me, to have the chance to get to Wembley is extra special after the injury.
"The FA Cup is one of the major competitions in the world. Everyone watches it and to play in an FA Cup final or semi-final would be fantastic.
"It is just great to be back playing and back involved all the time. I'd love to get more game time but we will have to see what happens."
Despite their cup exploits, Alex McLeish's side are in the midst of a fierce battle to beat the drop in the Premier League, bearing a similar resemblance to that of Middlesbrough, who reached both domestic cup finals but were relegated in the same season in 1997.
Murphy was a member of that squad as a youngster but is positive that the same will not happen at St Andrews.
"I was at both of those finals with Boro," he added.
"It wasn't very nice and then for the club to get relegated was a horrible feeling, the worst feeling.
"Birmingham don't want to do that. If it meant us surviving in the Premier League and getting knocked out of the cup, I think everyone would take that.
"But relegation is a word that no one mentions in the dressing room. We never contemplate relegation.
"Everyone is that positive and close together and we are very confident we will stay in the league."
"Bolton have had a fine season and we know it will be a difficult game.
"But this game is another massive one for the club. To reach another major semi-final would be a great achievement for the club, the fans and the players.
"We're certainly 100 per cent focused on this game."