By Paul Brown
Joe Bennett has fond memories of the Capital One Cup - and wants to create even more this season.
Bennett was a teenager following Middlesbrough in 2004 when they went all the way to the final of the competition - then known as the League Cup.
Steve McClaren's side saw off Bolton in the showpiece at the Millennium Stadium and Bennett remembers the remarkable run like it was yesterday.
Bennett believes victory over Manchester City and progress in subsequent rounds will give the club some added feelgood factor.
He said: "I remember the League Cup run for Middlesbrough in 2004 when we went all the way to the final and beat Bolton at the Millennium Stadium.
"I was a fan as a kid and used to go and watch the games so the League Cup probably has a bit more significance to me because it was a big thing up there for Boro to get a cup final.
"I was about 13 or 14 at the time when Boro got to that final and it was a great time to support the club at the time and obviously Steve McClaren did a great job.
"We also had some great players like Gaizka Mendieta and Juninho who played in that final as well as a few ex-Villa players like Ugo Ehiogu, Gareth Southgate and George Boateng.
"A good cup run can give you a lot of confidence and help generate a feelgood factor about the place so hopefully we can produce a good performance against City and give ourselves a chance of doing that."
Bennett is eager for more action after making his debut - albeit in a defeat - at Southampton.
He'd love the chance to try and stifle the attacking instincts of City's attacking aces like David Silva and Sergio Aguero.
He added: "These are the kind of games that you want to play in as a young player.
"I've joined Villa to hopefully play against the likes of Manchester City and test myself against some top players.
"I guess if a few of the lads are tired after the Southampton game the manager might change round a bit so hopefully I've got a good chance of playing at the Etihad.
"You only have to take one look at their squad to see it is packed with international quality all over the pitch. It will be tough to face the likes of Silva and Aguero - if they play - because they are both top draw players.
"But these are definitely the kind of challenges you want to take on as a player. I want to play against the best players and Manchester City have a lot of them."
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