YORKSHIRE bragging rights are up for grabs today as four of the county’s Championship clubs prepare for the region’s first taste of derby action.
Sheffield Wednesday host Leeds United at Hillsborough this lunchtime but it is perhaps the other all-White Rose affair that, on form, is the most intriguing encounter.
Huddersfield Town and Barnsley may be two of the more unfancied teams in the second tier, according to the bookmakers at least. But today’s showdown at the John Smith’s Stadium pits two in-form sides against each other in front of what is expected to be a 20,000-plus crowd.
“A local derby is a big game for us,” said Town’s head coach David Wagner, whose side have seven points from three games compared to the Reds’ six. “I saw Barnsley (beat QPR 3-2) on Wednesday and, in my opinion, they are the best team we will have played in terms of togetherness. But we want to build a strong castle here that no-one wants to come to.”
Thirty or so miles south, Wednesday are looking to also make home advantage pay against Leeds.
“There are no favourites in derbies,” said Carlos Carvalhal, whose side claimed four points off Leeds last season. “We must concentrate on ourselves. We must be stronger.
“Derbies are tough games around the world. The emotion is high.
“The game is more special for the fans, it is an emotional environment.
“But inside the pitch it is 11 players trying to win the game.”
Derby day and football build-up: Pages 2-5