Luke maintains Steeley focus

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Steele: Could miss FA Cup final

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Luke Steele insists that he is not letting the prospect of cup final heartache ruin his semi-final preparations.

The keeper is currently on loan at Championship side Barnsley and has played a major role in helping the Tykes into the last four of the FA Cup.

He is expected to line up for Simon Davey's side in their Wembley showdown with Cardiff on Saturday, but knows that his dreams of appearing in the final could already have been dashed by the time he takes to the field.

With his parent club West Brom taking on Portsmouth in Saturday's semi-final, there remains a possibility that Steele would be ineligible to take part in what would have been the biggest game of his career.

However, he is determined to remain professional in the build-up to the clash with the Bluebirds and is fully focused on helping Barnsley into their first major final in 96 years.


"I've been asked about it a million times this week," said Steele.

"I'll take whatever comes on Saturday and try and approach the game come Sunday with the same attitude whether I know if I'm going to play, or not, in the final if we win.

"It's going to be a test but other players have done it in the past and it's all about mental strength.

"Hopefully I've got the mental strength to keep my mind on the game."


A dispute between West Brom and Barnsley concerning the payment of Steele's wages had threatened to strip him of his chance to play at Wembley this weekend, but with the problem now resolved he admits that he cannot wait to tread the hallowed turf.

"It took a little bit of time to get my future sorted but once it did I was delighted," he said.

"I wanted a permanent move in the summer and I couldn't be happier.

"Now I'm looking forward to Sunday and as a kid I literally had dreams of playing at Wembley and now it's coming true.

"It's a big game and it's going to be a great occasion, but we are not just going to have a good day out and look good in front of the cameras, we're going there to beat Cardiff and get into the final.

"I just hope everyone is as focused as they should be to get a result."


The former Manchester United and Peterborough keeper also revealed that the Tykes are approaching the weekend fixture with no fear having already disposed of Premier League giants Liverpool and Chelsea in the competition so far.

"Cardiff know it's going to be a tough game because we've beaten Liverpool and Chelsea as everyone knows, and anyone you get in the FA Cup semi-final is going to be tough," Steele added.

"But there's no one to fear and you shouldn't fear anyone in football.

"We went to Liverpool and we played against players who have won the European Cup and we went and beat them.

"Then we played Chelsea and we never feared them. We were wary of them but didn't fear them.

"Cardiff have done quite well this season and they've got some good players and I think it'll be a good game."