Bruce praises 'model professional' Meyler after Hull reach FA Cup semi-finals

The midfielder was on the end of a headbutt from Alan Pardew last time out, but scored on Sunday as the Tigers ended an 84-year wait for another semi-final berth
Steve Bruce praised the attitude of David Meyler after the midfielder overcame a tumultious week to score as Hull booked their first FA Cup semi-final since 1930.

Meyler was involved in an altercation with Newcastle manager Alan Pardew last weekend, with the manager appearing to headbutt the player - an action he has since been charged by the Football Association for.

Bruce believes Meyler has put the incident behind him after scoring even if his goal celebration of headbutting the corner flag seemingly referenced the matter.

"It just shows you what football is. Last week, I have to say the way he conducted himself was a model for professional footballers," he told reporters.

"They get mocked occasionally but he took it on the chin, accepted the apology and moved on. He didn’t roll on the floor, he didn’t bleat in the newspapers; he just got on with it.

"You didn’t expect him to get anywhere near it but his determination and attitude has made him a firm favourite here."

Meyler's strike was sandwiched by goals from Curtis Davies and Matty Fryatt, and Bruce wanted to dedicate the win to the supporters as the club reached the last four of the competition for the first time in 84 years.

"At a football club, managers and players come and go, but the people who you are happy for are the supporters. It’s quite remarkable that it’s 1930 since we were last in a semi-final and I can’t see many making it to Wembley who were here for the last one.

"Let’s enjoy it. I’m delighted for those people and let’s make it a fantastic occasion with a Yorkshire derby at Wembley.

"I’ve said all along that it’s sad that the FA Cup has lost a bit of the magic, but when you get to this stage, if you are a supporter or involved in anyway, it becomes exciting. It’s not often you go to Wembley."

Meanwhile, Sunderland manager Gus Poyet was less than pleased with his side's performance, and has called on his squad to battle for points in their battle against relegation from the Premier League.

"We didn’t play well, we didn’t create enough, but I’m not going to go too deep into the reasons because I will find an excuse and I don’t want any excuses," he said.

"We’re out and I’m not going to be asked next week which is more important, the cup or the league. From now on, we somehow need points.

"It doesn’t matter how they come or the what the team is. Any player who plays from now on is a Sunderland first team player and they need to defend the club to the best of their ability. If we are good enough we will stay up."