"Allan Kuhn – Aalborg loves you!" So sang the Aalborg BK supporters on the evening of 10 December 2008 – one of the most historic in the club's history. It was the night that AaB secured a 2-2 draw against reigning European champions Manchester United FC at Old Trafford.
Kuhn had been promoted to head coach in October that year following the dismissal of Bruce Rioch and duly presided over 14 undefeated fixtures. 'The Kuhn effect' was widely hailed among the club's support but his impressive record was not enough to earn a permanent stay at the helm. Swede Magnus Pehrsson was hired as full-time coach and Kuhn returned to his role as a No2.
That is until Superliga outfit FC Midtjylland came calling following the dismissal of Thomas Thomasberg earlier this season. Kuhn assumed control of a Midtjylland team who surprisingly found themselves in the relegation zone and he initially struggled to improve their fortunes. However, he soon instilled the kind of attitude in his players that had once prompted him to call on his AaB squad "to be Bravehearts", masterminding a rapid rise up the table.
Just three defeats in 18 fixtures put Midtjylland right in contention for a third-placed finish that carries with it the prize of a place in next term's UEFA Europa League second qualifying round. Three games without a win in all competitions – most recently a 3-2 loss at AaB – has led to them drifting three points from European qualification via the league but a place in the Danish Cup final offers the same opportunity and is further evidence of Midtjylland's rejuvenation under their new coach.
"I am extremely happy and proud, and really looking forward to the final," said Kuhn after his side's 4-2 aggregate success over Odense BK. "That is some of the greatest fun you can imagine." Midtjylland, who have not won in two previous final appearances, face showpiece debutants FC Nordsjælland on 13 May.
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