Swansea booked their place in next month's Capital One Cup final on Wednesday night when they wrapped up a 2-0 aggregate win over European champions Chelsea.
The Swans were huge outsiders for a League Cup triumph at the start of the season, but their opponents Bradford were priced at a remarkable 2000-1 to lift the trophy.
Although Reading have experienced an upturn in form of late, they are still not fancied to reach their first FA Cup final this term.
But having watched Swansea and Bradford eliminate such heavyweights as Arsenal, Aston Villa, and Chelsea between them in the League Cup, McDermott hopes his team can carve out a route to the FA Cup final - starting with Saturday's fourth round clash against Sheffield United.
"What has been happening in the Capital One Cup with Swansea and Bradford gives us all hope," the Reading boss told a press conference.
"It's a fantastic story. You get one chance on the day and it's a one off.
"I texted Parky (Bradford manager Phil Parkinson) the other day and I might go there to support him in the final, he's a good friend of mine.
"It's amazing what he has done - the same for (Swansea boss) Michael Laudrup. At the moment it looks like he is going to be the manager of the year, he's done a fantastic job."
On paper the Royals should have no problem swatting aside the Blades at the Madejski Stadium this weekend.
United were relegated from the Barclays Premier League in 2007 and have sunk like a stone since. The club dropped to the third tier of English football two years ago and they now sit eight points adrift of npower League One leaders Tranmere having been pipped to the post for automatic promotion by their bitter rivals Sheffield Wednesday last season.
McDermott remembers the south Yorkshire club in a different light, however, having grown up watching the likes of Tony Currie, Mick Jones and Gil Reece star in the top tier of the early 1970s.
"It was a glory era," McDermott said. "I remember Tony Currie used to bend them in the corner from all kinds of different angles for them."
McDermott knows Blades manager Danny Wilson well and is sure the former Wednesday midfielder can bring the good times back to Bramall Lane.
"It's a big club with great history and when you play them it's never easy," the 51-year-old said.
"They're a giant. There are some big teams in their league and the Championship, but they are arguably the biggest there. Let's hope they can get up this season.
"We've had staff members who have worked there before and they say what a fantastic club it is.
"They are a massive club and will have a good following.
"I know Danny quite well, we had a drink at the LMA (League Managers' Association) functions together. He's a good guy. They are trying to get back to where they belong in the Championship at least."
McDermott, meanwhile, confirmed that Reading are still in talks with TP Mazembe over the signing of Zambia defender, Stopilla Sunzu, who had a trial last week before flying to South Africa for the African Nations Cup.
It is understood that a dispute over the 24-year-old's contract with the DR Congo club is currently holding up negotiations over the transfer, but McDermott is refusing to give up on the centre-back, who trained with the club six years ago.
"We're talking," McDermott said. "We're still monitoring that situation. We've known him since he was a young lad. We will have to wait on that one."