Fabian Delph elated with FA Cup defeat of Liverpool, hails 'brilliant' Sherwood

Aston Villa matchwinner Fabian Delph was left pinching himself and praising his manager after booking his side's place in the FA Cup final at the expense of Liverpool.

Villa skipper Delph set up Christian Benteke's equaliser after Philippe Coutinho had opened the scoring for the Reds, and then swept home nine minutes into the second half to secure a 2-1 victory.

Delph's strike means Tim Sherwood's charges will return to Wembley to face holders Arsenal in next month's showpiece, and the former Leeds midfielder says that will be a dream come true.

"I can't wait for the final. To walk out as captain is going to be the highlight of my career. So happy days, I'm happy for the boys," he told BT Sport 1.

The 25-year-old England international reserved special praise for the job Sherwood has done since taking over in February, when the club looked to be in deep trouble in the drop zone.

Big wins over West Brom, Sunderland and Tottenham in the league, as well as the cup run, have lifted the mood around Villa Park and Delph feels Sherwood deserves a lot of credit for the turnaround.

"The gaffer [Sherwood] is brilliant. He's positive with everybody. He doesn't panic. He's got a gameplan and we stuck to it and there were a lot of young lads in the team," he said.

"Young Jack [Grealish] has come in today and done fantastic, and we're just happy. We're thrilled for the fans."

Delph now feels Villa can use their cup run as a springboard to secure Premier League survival, and is not worried that the final will become a distraction.

"We're confident we'll come through it. We'll put that aside for today and honestly the next game we've got to think about is one in the Premier League," he added.