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Relishing it!

Michael Dawson has summed up what tonight means.

Michael Dawson has summed up what tonight means.

Victory over Manchester City at Eastlands will mean Champions League football next season for the first time in our history.

And the defender, who scooped every Player of the Season award going at the Club last week, is relishing the occasion.

He said: "You couldn't pick a better fixture to be your penultimate game of the season. The rewards if we win are massive and we're all looking forward to it."

The 26-year-old was part of the side that suffered final day disappointment at West Ham in 2006 when we lost our grip on a place in Europe's premier competition in heartbreaking circumstances.

But ‘Daws' is aiming to consign that day well and truly to the history books by helping a team he has seen progress ever since reach the promised land.

He added: "We've come a long way in the last four years. There are a number of players still here who were involved in that final day at West Ham when it just wasn't to be and we missed out.

"But let's hope this season ends on a high and ends tonight with a win, then we can go to Burnley on the final day and relax.

"The lads know what us playing Champions League football will mean to everyone involved - it would be a great achievement."

City, just a point behind us in fifth place, stand in our way and ‘Daws' knows how tough tonight will be.

But the England World Cup hopeful also makes reference to the fact that we have only ever lost once in eight games at the City of Manchester Stadium, winning five, as well as defeating our rivals comfortably at the Lane in December.

‘Daws' concludes: "We played them earlier in the season and come away with a 3-0 win after a fantastic performance but they're a good team and they've been fighting us all the way for this fourth spot - there have been a number of teams involved but they're the ones we haven't been able to shake off.

"We know it's going to be a tough game but whenever we've gone to City we've always seemed to have good results and good performances, so let's hope there will be another one tonight."