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Wembley memories spur Angel on

PUBLISHED

13:26 19th February 2013

. . . Rangel hoping for a repeat of Swans' last visit to famous venue


Angel Rangel believes the Swans’ special winning Wembley memories will provide extra motivation for Sunday’s Capital One Cup Final against Bradford.
The Swans’ first trip to the new Wembley Stadium saw them become the first Welsh club to reach the Premier League following the Championship Play-Off Final win over Reading.
Now they look to become the first Welsh side to win the League Cup – and lift the club’s first major trophy when the take on the Bantams this weekend.
And Rangel, now in his sixth season in South Wales, feels the opportunity to create another chapter of unforgettable memories will spur the Swans on even further.
“Everyone is very excited around the city. We feel the excitement of the supporters. We understand how important this is to everyone,” said the Spaniard.
“We know the Jack Army will be out in full force at Wembley.
“One of my fondest memories at this club so far was when the team bus was pulling into Wembley for the Play-Off final and there were thousands of supporters in black and white making a lot of noise – and I mean a LOT of noise!
“It just set the tone for the day, and we knew we had to win for them.
“The support inside that stadium was incredible. It was as if the supporters were on the pitch alongside us cheering all the boys on.
“And then to lift the trophy in front of them, well, it is something that will never leave our memory.
“But that is the feeling we want again this Sunday. We don’t want to be the team watching on as the opposition celebrate.
“We have experienced that winning feeling at Wembley before, and you can’t beat it.
“For sure, that gives us even more motivation to go on and win the final.”
The Road to Wembley has provided the Swans with different challenges, starting with a home win over Barnsley while a two-leg semi-final against European champions Chelsea saw Michael Laudrup and Co book their place at the famous venue.
And Rangel feels each game has required the Swans to show all parts of their qualities.
He explained: “People can talk about this game being a League Two club taking on a team from the Barclays Premier League –but  I don’t think it matters who we are playing.
“That’s because it’s a final and both teams are going out to win. As Bradford have shown, they have the quality to beat Premier League teams, but we have also shown our true qualities in this competition.
“We have won at Liverpool and beat Chelsea over two legs in the semi-final, which were major achievements for us.
“But if you look back to where our run started, it shows you that we had to beat a Championship team in Barnsley before going to Crawley.
“We had to really battle at Crawley – they are a tough League One side. But we showed the other side of our qualities as a team.
“We like to pass the ball around with a lot of movement and that will hopefully be what we will do on the big pitch at Wembley, but we can also dig deep. That is a key quality.
“But it all depends on the day, of course, and we are all really looking forward to returning to Wembley and playing our part of what is a massive occasion for both clubs.”
The 30-year-old has been a pivotal figure in the club’s rise from League One to the top flight since his move from Spanish third-tier club Terrassa.
His performances have even earned talk of a potential call-up to the Spanish national team in the press.
A consistent performer since the first day he arrived at SA1, Rangel now hopes to a League Cup winners medal to go along his League One and Play-Off Final accolades.
And, as he adds, it is a chance to be etched into the Swansea City history books.
“It’s a different situation from the last time we were at Wembley,” said Rangel.
“The Play-Off Final was life-changing – this game is about making history.
“We know if we win this cup then it will be the first major trophy Swansea City has won in its 100-year history. That is a major thing for everyone connected with the club.
“Further down the line, when we have all retired from the game, if we are mentioned as history-makers for Swansea City, then that would make us all feel so proud because this is a great club and a great city with supporters who are so passionate about their club.”

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